25 June 2004


Investigative journalist brutally beaten on eve of libel case appeal

Incident details

Alina Anghel


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(RSF/IFEX) - RSF has strongly condemned the brutal beating of an investigative journalist on the eve of an appeal court hearing in a libel case in which she was involved.

On 23 June 2004, Alina Anghel, of the investigative weekly "Timpul", was attacked in front of her home in Chisinau by two unknown men, who beat her with an iron bar, leaving her with head injuries and a broken arm. They also stole her handbag. She was taken to hospital in serious condition.

"Everything points to this assault being an attack against press freedom," said RSF in a letter to President Vladimir Voronin, calling on him to see that everything possible is done to find and punish those responsible.

"We therefore urge you to ensure that the link with her work is treated as the most significant lead," added the organisation.

Constantin Tanase, editor-in-chief of "Timpul", said he was convinced the assault was directly connected with Anghel's investigative reports into the case of a luxury car given to Interior Minister Gheorghe Papuc and to the defamation case brought against the paper by the firm Daac-Hermes.

Tanase said Anghel has received a number of telephone threats since the January publication of an article entitled, "Luxury in the Land of Poverty", in which she revealed the existence of an agreement between the State Chancellery and Daac-Hermes involving luxury Skoda cars.

The assault came on the eve of the Appeal Court hearing of the libel action brought by the company against "Timpul". The journalist was unable to attend the hearing.

"No one can feel safe any longer," said Tanase. "Any citizen who does not think like the Communist Party can be attacked."

In November 2003, a "Timpul" journalist was physically attacked after the publication of an article critical of President Voronin.


Reporters Without Borders
47, rue Vivienne
75002 Paris
rsf (@) rsf.org
Fax:+33 1 45 23 11 51

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