April 20, 2001 |
A Russian media magnate who lost the jewels of his empire but won his freedom in the past few days declared his independent national television network dead Thursday and said he will sell his share to the highest bidder. Once the energy company Gazprom wrested control of NTV last weekend, tycoon Vladimir A. Gusinsky said, the network lost its identity. Sevodnya, the flagship daily newspaper of Gusinsky's Media-Most company, was shut down Monday.
April 18, 2001 |
After seizing Russia's only independent national television network, energy giant Gazprom has moved swiftly to dismantle two related publications that were critical of the Kremlin. Amid grim days for media freedom in Russia, journalists from the liberal Itogi weekly newsmagazine were locked out and fired Tuesday, a day after the partially state-owned Gazprom joined forces with the head of the Sem Dney publishing house to shut down a leading newspaper, Sevodnya.
April 15, 2001 |
Management insisted that it was a normal, "very orderly" corporate takeover. But journalists who resigned en masse Saturday from Russia's NTV network saw the change at the top as a naked power play by the Kremlin to muzzle the country's most outspoken news broadcaster. After months of legal wrangling, the state-run utility giant Gazprom finally got control of Russia's only private nationwide television network.
April 14, 2001 |
The self-proclaimed new managers of NTV, Russia's only nationwide independent television network, today changed the security guards, fired journalists who rejected their authority and took the station off the air in the midst of the morning news broadcast. The first real sign of the impact of the seizure of NTV's airwaves came at 8:06 a.m., when anchor Andrei Norkin was cut off in midsentence as he attempted to explain what had happened when the new managers arrived.
April 7, 2001 |
Talks about the future of Russia's only independent nationwide television network crumbled as representatives of the state-run gas company Gazprom rejected a proposal to ask the Supreme Court to determine the legitimacy of its takeover of NTV. NTV insists that Gazprom--the largest shareholder--illegally put its loyalists on the network's board, and its journalists have refused to work for the new leadership.
April 6, 2001 |
The new chairman of Russia's only independent TV network faced down angry journalists Thursday, dismissing their fears that he might undermine media freedom and insisting that his only goal is to turn a profit. "You can't charge a person with a crime that he hasn't yet committed," said Alfred Kokh, who orchestrated the hostile takeover of Russia's combative NTV network earlier this week. "We haven't quashed freedom of speech, and we don't plan to do so."