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OSCE Raises Questions About Free Speech In Ukraine


OSCE head Audronius Azubalis

OSCE head Audronius Azubalis

The chairman of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe has cast doubt over the Ukrainian government's efforts to guarantee freedom of speech.

Lithuanian Foreign Minister Audronius Azubalis, who holds the OSCE's yearlong chairmanship, said he had raised the issue with the government during a visit to Kyiv.

He did not specify what issues he had raised during talks with Ukraine's foreign minister, Kostyantyn Hryshchenko, but said he hoped they would be "studied seriously and scrupulously."

He was speaking at a news conference with his Ukrainian counterpart, who defended his country's track record.

European Parliament President Jerzy Buzek said last week that worsening protections for human rights and independent media in Ukraine were grounds for "concern."

Azubalis is on a regional trip, which is expected to take him to Moldova as well.

compiled from agency reports
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