Our partners in and around Ukraine – supporting journalists and countering disinformation

Our partners in and around Ukraine – supporting journalists and countering disinformation

The lives of journalists in Ukraine, Belarus and Russia have been in jeopardy since the start of the war in Ukraine. On top of that, disinformation is a prominent war tactic. How do you ensure that journalists can do their jobs safely? And how do you guarantee the quality of information on Ukraine? We support existing partners that have expanded their work in the region and we have also launched a new partnership.

Press Freedom Centers

Together with a local organization, the Institute for Mass Information, our partner organization Reporters Without Borders (RSF) established a Press Freedom Centre in Lviv, western Ukraine, in March of this year. The center provides financial and psychological aid, as well as bullet-proof vests and helmets to journalists. The center also boasts an internet connection, live-streaming options and access to a shelter so that journalists can always continue to work. In May, the RSF opened another Center in the capital of Kyiv. “Opening this new center will allow RSF to be at the front line of protecting Ukrainian and international journalists,” said Alexandre Query, the Center’s coordinator. “A new chapter is opening in our mission to protect and defend press freedom in Ukraine.”

Civitates Solidarity Fund

In response to the war in Ukraine, Civitates set up a Solidarity Fund for extra donations to partner organizations in the EU. Civitates is an alliance of foundations, including Adessium Foundation, aimed at safeguarding the democratic values in Europe. So far, Civitates has supported initiatives that counter disinformation and inform war refugees about their rights.

Violations of the law of war documented

Our partner Human Rights Watch (HRW) has been documenting violations of the law of war, including attacks on civilians and other human rights violations that have occurred during the conflict in Ukraine. It is vital to document such violations, also with a view to cases that will be brought before the International Criminal Court. HRW recently reported on abuses in the occupied areas in southern Ukraine. “Russian forces have turned occupied areas of southern Ukraine into an abyss of fear and wild lawlessness,” said Yulia Gorbunova, senior Ukraine researcher at Human Rights Watch. “Torture, inhumane treatment, as well as arbitrary detention and unlawful confinement of civilians, are among the apparent war crimes we have documented, and Russian authorities need to end such abuses immediately and understand that they can, and will, be held accountable.”

Hubs for exiled journalists

Adessium Foundation has launched a new partnership with Free Press Unlimited (FPU). This partner provides emergency assistance to journalists and opens Media Hubs for journalists fleeing from Russia and Belarus. This year, FPU plans to open extra hubs in Poland in response to the influx of journalists reporting on Ukraine and the impact of the war on the region. All hubs provide assistance and support, with temporary accommodation for journalists who have fled the war, spaces where journalists can work together, and technical support to independent media/journalists reporting on Ukraine.

15/09/2021
Civitates and the International Day of Democracy: developments and results