Gongadze murder 10 years on: 'Instigators were at top of political pyramid' - Press Gazette

Gongadze murder 10 years on: 'Instigators were at top of political pyramid'

The UK National Union of Journalists is taking a delegation to the Ukrainian Embassy in London on Thursday to demand answers about the killing of Gyorgy Gongadze on the 10th anniversary of his death.

Gongadze was murdered in 2000 after exposing government corruption on the website he founded.

In 2008 three men were jailed for carrying out the Gongadze killing. But at the time press freedom campaigners claimed that high-ranking figures in the Ukrainian establishment ordered the killing.

Simon Pirani, an NUJ activist who specialises in covering the former Soviet Union, said: ‘The Gongadze case is a classic example of the impunity of powerful people who instigate violence against journalists.

‘The instigators of Gongadze’s murder were at the very top of the Ukrainian political pyramid.
‘The gang leader, Aleksei Pukach, is now awaiting trial, and three of his accomplices are serving prison sentences – but the instigators of the crime have never been brought to justice.

‘The conversations in Kuchma’s office about harming Gongadze are known to the world, because Mykola Melnychenko, a former presidential bodyguard, released tape recordings of them two months after the murder.”

More on this story on the NUJ website.



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