Pavel Sheremet Vitaliy Holovin/Getty Images

La libertad de prensa en Ucrania, amenazada

NUEVA YORK – El 20 de julio de 2016, Pavel Sheremet, un destacado periodista nacido en Bielorrusia, se dirigía a su trabajo en los estudios de Radio Vesti en Kiev, cuando el Subaru que conducía estalló en una concurrida intersección. Las ventanas cercanas temblaron; bandadas de pájaros echaron a volar. Sheremet (44) murió casi de inmediato, y la Fiscalía General de Ucrania confirmó enseguida que la causa de la explosión había sido una bomba. Un año después, el asesinato de Sheremet sigue sin resolver.

Si esto hubiera sido un atentado al azar, el Comité para la Protección de los Periodistas (CPJ, por la sigla en inglés) al que pertenezco no hubiera pasado todo un año investigándolo y presionando al gobierno ucraniano para que lo esclarezca. Pero Sheremet fue un defensor incansable de la transparencia y la democracia, que primero trabajó como periodista en su Bielorrusia natal, después en Rusia y finalmente en Ucrania. Hasta que su asesinato se resuelva, la verdad que buscó en vida rehuirá a sus compatriotas en su muerte.

El asesinato es la forma más consumada de censura. La matanza de periodistas instila autocensura en la labor de sus colegas. Y cuando un país no lleva a los asesinos ante la justicia (sobre todo un país como Ucrania, aspirante a ingresar a la Unión Europea), que declare estar comprometido con la democracia y el Estado de derecho suena a hueco.

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