IMA calls upon the Ombudsman: Initiate an investigation on the lawfulness of the police conduct towards journalist Furkan Saliu

 

After yesterday’s arrest and detention of the journalist Furkan Saliu, the Institute for Media and Analytics IMA sent a request to the Ombudsman to initiate an independent investigation to determine possible abuse and overstepping of the official powers of the police.

In its request to the Ombudsman, IMA points out that the journalist Furkan Saliu publicly stated that he was deprived of his liberty by police officers while trying to perform his journalistic profession, as well as that his phone, with which he tried to record and document an alleged case of excessive use of force by the police, was confiscated. Also, the journalist publicly made claims that he was subjected to police violence, as well as that his recordings were deleted by the police, despite the fact that he publicly indicated to them that he was a journalist who is just doing his job.

“Considering that in its initial announcement, the Ministry of the Interior did not present any specific and reliable information about the alleged attack on police officers, nor about their possible injuries, nor did it state for which specific crimes the journalist Furkan Saliu and his media colleagues were arrested, the Institute for media and analytics IMA from Skopje asks the Ombudsman to initiate a procedure to determine the possible abuse and overstepping of the official powers of the police, in the case of the arrest of the journalist Furkan Saliu on April 7th 2024”, it is said in IMA’s request to the Ombudsman.

Since this is a case that not only causes social and political polarization, but also deeply affects the human rights and the right to freedom of expression of journalists and media workers, IMA requests from the Ombudsman to enter the official premises of the Ministry of the Interior and carry out a direct insight in the files related to the case, to interview all officials who can provide information about the case, and to constantly inform the media and the public about all discovered findings and possible police transgressions.