5 Kanal went on hunger strike
October 28, 2004.
# Yesterday, on 9:05 p.m. in the program “Tchas” Andriy Shevtchenko announced the staff of 5 Kanal (The 5th Channel) went on hunger strike. The journalists are protesting against the pressure onto the TV channel. The decision was made by the journalists of the 5 Kanal who had discussed the measure till the very last minute, the program got some delay in transmission on the air because of it. Before saying the staff was going to strike A. Shevchenko announced some progress in the dispute MP Sivkovich vs 5 Kanal. The member of the parliament Volodymyr Sivkovich who had brought action against the owner of the channel MP Petro Poroshenko, has withdrew its suit, by this the freezing of the bank account belonging to the channel ought to be released soon. However, till yesterday, the bank account remained blocked. The other issue concerned authorization to transmission in Kyiv which had been issued by the National Council of television and radio broadcast. The Council settled not to withdraw the licence from 5 Channel. But, as A. Shevchnko told, the question of authorization remained a delayed-action bomb. As soon as the authorities want shut down the channel once more, the same scenario with withdrawing of the licence would be used.
The 5 Kanal journalists stated they felt large backing from the part of their colleagues in other mass media, and from several ngo-s too. Near 5 thousands of television spectators had called to the 5 Kanal to express their sympathies and support.