Last Updated: Friday, 19 September 2014, 13:55 GMT

TV and radio editorial freedom threatened by senate's "anachronistic" bill

Publisher Reporters Without Borders
Publication Date 26 June 2008
Cite as Reporters Without Borders, TV and radio editorial freedom threatened by senate's "anachronistic" bill, 26 June 2008, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/4864b6aac.html [accessed 21 September 2014]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Although initially rejected by the chamber of deputies, a proposed amendment to the broadcasting law that would force radio and TV stations to balance news with "negative" themes with an equal amount of news with "positive" themes was adopted yesterday by the senate. The amendment needs to be approved by the president to take effect.

Prior to the vote, the senate's human rights commission opposed the bill but it was supported by the culture and mass media commission.

"This bill is utterly unacceptable in an European Union member country," Reporters Without Borders said. "Only countries such as China or North Korea still adopt this kind of retrograde and anachronistic legislation, which is completely subjective and devoid of meaning."

The press freedom organisation added : "We call on President Traian Basescu not to sign this bill into law as it is manifestly incompatible with the European standards that Romania accepted when it joined the EU in 2007. We urge the senate, if it is called on to hold another vote, to reject this bill in its entirety."

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