15:13 GMT27 November 2020
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    Chairman of the Russian Presidential Council for Civil Society and Human Rights Mikhail Fedotov said that the introduction of visas for Russian journalists by the Turkish authorities violates the agreements reached in 1975 in Helsinki, when the Final Act of the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe was signed.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Turkey’s visa requirements for Russian journalists on short-term assignments in Turkey violates the 1975 Helsinki Accords that guide relations between the former Soviet states with the West, Chairman of the Presidential Council for Civil Society and Human Rights Mikhail Fedotov said Wednesday.

    The Turkish Embassy in Russia told RIA Novosti earlier in the day Ankara’s entry visa requirements for Russian journalists on short-term assignments would take effect on February 15.

    "The introduction of visas for Russian journalists is another unfriendly move. Moreover, it violates the agreements reached in 1975 in Helsinki, when the Final Act of the Conference on Security and Co-operation in Europe was signed," Fedotov told RIA Novosti.

    He noted "new openly hostile initiatives" stemming from Turkish leadership and called on both sides to resolve tensions in the wake of Turkey's jet shooting down a Russian frontline bomber over Syria on November 24.

    The adviser to Russian President Vladimir Putin said he hoped OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Dunja Mijatovic would "react properly on the infringement of the rights of Russian journalists traveling to Turkey."

    The Helsinki Final Act was signed by 35 countries on August 1, 1975, in an attempt to improve relations between the then-communist bloc, comprising the Soviet Union and the countries of the Warsaw Pact, and the West.

    The Act’s article on humanitarian cooperation requests participating states to "examine in a favorable spirit and within a suitable and reasonable time scale" journalists’ visa requests, among other measures to improve their working conditions.


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