The Slovenia Times

European Commission closely following developments at RTV Slovenija


Brussels - The European Commission has commented on Monday's strike at RTV Slovenija by saying it "continues to follow the developments closely as well as the media situation in Slovenia more generally". It pointed to the recently presented European Media Freedom Act, saying "no public service media should become a propaganda channel of one party".

"Public service media play a crucial role in providing access to quality and impartial information, but because of their status and how they operate, they are also particularly exposed to the risk of interference and political influence," Commission spokesman Christian Wigand wrote.

Commenting for the STA after the public broadcaster's journalists stepped out their protest against what they say are different forms of pressure being exerted by a leadership associated with the former government, Wigand highlighted the points made by the Commission "in our rule of law report".

In the July report Slovenia was recommended to strengthen "the rules and mechanisms to enhance the independent governance and editorial independence of public service media".

Pointing to the European Media Freedom Act, Wigand said "we want to put for the first time in EU law safeguards to protect the editorial independence of the media. No public service media should become a propaganda channel of one party".

"We want EU countries to put in law objective criteria for appointing the managers and governing board and for their security of tenure."

Wigand moreover said the Commission was "aware that the Slovenian parliament has agreed to amend the RTV Slovenija Act, which among other things aims at reorganising the management of RTV Slovenia. We understand that the process is still ongoing and its implementation is pending".

"We welcome the government's intention of urgently addressing the pressing issues concerning the management of RTV Slovenija," he added.


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