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Ukrainian Journalists Protest Defamation Bill

Some 100 Ukrainian journalists and media activists picketed the parliament in Kyiv on October 1, protesting against a defamation bill. The draft law backed by the ruling Party of the Regions proposes up to five years in jail for offenders. Parliament passed it in a first reading last month, but the bill was then put on hold after the opposition and independent media denounced it as part of a crackdown on freedom of speech in the run up to parliamentary elections on October 28.