16:26 12.02.2021

Sanctions against MP Kozak, 112 Ukraine, NewsOne, ZIK TV channels fuel tension among Ukraine's financial and industrial groups – political analyst

2 min read

KYIV. Feb 12 (Interfax-Ukraine) – The imposition of sanctions and blocking of the 112 Ukraine, NewsOne and ZIK TV channels, as well as sanctions against their owner, has caused tension among all financial and industrial groups in Ukraine, political analyst Taras Zahorodny has said.

"An unexpected and rather dubious step from a legal point of view, taken by [President of Ukraine Volodymyr] Zelensky to block the work of TV channels linked with [MP from the Opposition Platform - For Life party Viktor] Medvedchuk, has fueled tension among all financial and industrial groups in Ukraine, even among those which were disloyal to Medvedchuk. They have a logical question: what will happen if we become next? The mechanism that was legalized through the imposition of sanctions that led to the closure of TV channels will logically be applied further," Zahorodny said at a press conference at Interfax-Ukraine on Friday.

According to the political scientist, "in this way, the authorities are adopting a stand common for Ukrainian officials: it is not we who do not know how to govern, but the journalists speak badly about us."

"If the authorities have claims to any of the representatives of financial and industrial groups, then he and the rest should be informed and explained why this is being done, what are the grounds and evidence. In the case of the TV channels 112 Ukraine, NewsOne and ZIK all these factors were absent," Zahorodny said.

He also recalled that "in the situation with Taras Kozak [the owner of blocked TV channels], the society did not see any further steps." There was no submission a petition seeking to bring him to trial to parliament, the financing of terrorist activities was not confirmed, a criminal case was not opened and no evidence of guilt was presented.

"All this is nervously perceived by important players in the Ukrainian political Olympus," the political scientist said.

As reported, on February 2, Zelensky put into effect the decision of the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) on the application of sanctions against individuals and legal entities. Personal special economic and other restrictive measures were applied, in particular, to MP Kozak from the Opposition Platform - For Life party, as well as 112 Ukraine, NewsOne and ZIK TV channels.