Statement on Sentencing of Killer of Ukrainian Journalist Georgiy Gongadze

As delivered by Ambassador Ian Kelly to the Permanent Council,

Vienna, February 7, 2013

The United States wishes to join with the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, Dunja Mijatovic, in welcoming the conviction of the killer of Ukrainian journalist Georgiy Gongadze.  Oleksiy Pukach, former commander of the criminal investigations directorate in the Ukrainian Interior Ministry, was sentenced to life imprisonment for killing and beheading Gongadze.

While the sentencing of Pukach is overdue, it is a welcome development.  We echo Representative Mijatovic’s call for further investigation into the circumstances of the murder, in order to bring to justice those responsible for ordering Mr. Gongadze’s abduction and murder.

We will continue to support journalists everywhere who work to inform the public and expose corruption and injustice.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.