Reporters Without Borders calls on Condoleezza Rice to raise press freedom concerns with her Russian counterparts
Reporters Without Borders has alerted Condoleezza Rice to serious threats to press freedom in Russia ahead of her 19 and 20 April meeting in Moscow with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Journalists in Russia are being subjected to a rising spiral of violence with numbers of them suffering brutal attacks, the worldwide press freedom organisation said in its letter to the US Secretary of State.
It also urged her to raise the issue of "the disappearance of independent media in the country and growing crackdowns against journalists that is pushing them into a generalised self-censorship".
"No fewer than 17 journalists were physically attacked and three threatened in 2004 alone, because of their work. Two journalists suffered brutal attacks in March 2005." It said, adding "Violence against journalists constitutes the most serious threat to press freedom in Russia."