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What is going on in Italy – Safety Net Ossigeno – 14th – 20th February 2014

The third of 48 weekly reports produced with the support of the European Union and distributed in eleven countries to promote a common understanding

Ossigeno Safety Net – Weekly Report 14th – 20th February 2014

“Safety Net Ossigeno” – This is the third weekly report that Ossigeno per l’Informazione has produced in 2014 for the European project “Safety Net for European Journalists. A transnational network support for media freedom in Italy and Southeast Europe”.

In Calabria, a sudden failure blocked at the last moment the printing of the daily newspaper L’Ora della Calabria containing the news of a judicial investigation for corruption that the printer himself asked to censor; in the Emilia-Romagna Region, the City Council of Parma has banned employees from talking to reporters; a magistrate of Grosseto asked 500 thousand euros in reparation damages to the newspaper from Campania La Voce delle Voci, thus pushing the monthly on the brink of foreclosure; the former magistrate Mr Luigi De Magistris, now mayor of Naples, has sued the journalist of the newspaper Libero, Mr Filippo Facci, who has been convicted with his newspaper to pay for damages; the RAI journalist Mr Loris Mazzetti is being sued by the former director general of RAI, Mr Mauro Masi, for an article in which he criticized the interruption of the contract between the public broadcaster and its rival, SKY; the journalist Mr Marco Travaglio was acquitted after ten years from the charge of defamation against the TG1 journalist Ms Susanna Petruni. Furthermore, the Court has imposed an MP to pay 35 thousand euros due to an appellate decision issued in 2011. These are the major episodes that occurred after Reporters Without Borders has published a new report that prizes Italy with a flattering judgment on the state of freedom of the press. This positive opinion, as Ossigeno per l’Informazione has argued, is unfounded, is based on erroneous factual circumstances and should be corrected as it damages the organizations that are fighting to ensure that the Italian Parliament approves the decriminalization of defamation, which RWB is letting on to believe that it has already been approved. Finally, we take a look at Macedonia, where the editor of a newspaper has been removed for political reasons.

Director complains: who stopped the printing presses in Cosenza?
Mr Luciano Regolo of L’Ora di Calabria had just refused the publisher’s request to remove an article. The FNSI and the Order protest
The director of the newspaper from CosenzaL’Ora di Calabria, Mr Luciano Regolo, denounced in a press conference in the afternoon of February 19th that his paper was not on sale at newsstands because it was not possible to print it. As the printer himself explained, there was a technical failure in the rotary press. Read more

Parma city council forbids employees from talking to reporters
The council led by the M5S Mayor Mr Federico Pizzarotti has launched the code of conduct. FNSI and Asher replicate harshly: “absurd gagging”
It’s forbidden to talk to reporters. And for those who ‘stray’, there will be a four-day suspension. This is one of the provisions of the new code of conduct for the 1,300 employees of the City of Parma, and launched by the Council of the 5-star-movement’s Mr Stefano Pizzarotti. Read more

Complaints. Half a million euros in reparation of damages asked to La voce delle voci
The newspaper from Campania has been cited by a magistrate, and is now threatened with foreclosure. The next hearing on February, 25th
The Court of Rome will hold on February, 25th the first hearing of the civil case filed by the chief prosecutor of Grosseto, Mr Franco Verusio, against the daily La Voce delle Voci, for an article published by the monthly paper in 2012 in which the past participation of the magistrate as honorary president of the Studies Center for European Integration, Rights and Freedoms was recounted. Read more

Defamation. Libero condemned to compensate De Magistris
The Court of Milan ruled it on February, 13th. The mayor of Naples had sued Mr Filippo Facci and his newspaper for articles published in 2009 and 2010
The journalist Mr Filippo Facci and the editor of the newspaper Libero, Mr Maurizio Belpietro have been sentenced by the Court of Milan to the payment of damages for libel against the mayor of Naples and former magistrate Mr Luigi De Magistris, who gave the publicly on his Facebook profile. Read more

Loris Mazzetti sued by former Rai Ceo
Mr Mauro Masi denounced the journalist for an article written in September 2013 on the interruption of the contract between Sky and public television broadcaster
Mr Loris Mazzetti, a longtime collaborator of Mr Enzo Biagi, is being sued by the former CEO of RAI Mr Mauro Masi for an article on the interruption of the contract between RAI and Sky, published by the daily Il Fatto Quotidiano. Read more

Complaints. Two civil lawsuits won by Marco Travaglio
The journalist has been acquitted of slander against the colleague Ms Susanna Petruni. Mr Travaglio also obtained the restitution of the compensation for damages Read more

Reporters Without Borders (RWB). Spoof news on Italy that no one corrects
Reporters Without Borders has pushed Italy up in the ranking of press freedom, because of a non-existent “decriminalization of defamation”
Good news is travelling through Europe and the world: Italy, in one sweep, and from one year to the next, has gained nine places in the credited international ranking of the respected association Reporters Without Borders (RWB): from 58th to 47th. Read more

Macedonia. Editor of daily removed for political reasons
Mr Zoran Dimitrovski is accused of “manipulation”. His crime: to also represent the point of view of the opposition. Awaiting the new media law Read more

Macedonia. Life is difficult for the free press
Threats, layoffs, arrests, and a suspicious death: for the Macedonian journalists freedom of expression is increasingly stifled by government control Read more

RR/MF/ASP

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Questa pubblicazione è stata prodotta con il contributo dell'Unione Europea. La responsabilità sui contenuti di questa pubblicazione è di Ossigeno per l'informazione e non riflette in alcun modo l'opinione dell'Unione Europea. Vai alla pagina del progetto Safety Net

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