Journalists Dimitar Stoyanov and Attila Biro were investigating alleged corruption in EU-funded projects. Ossigeno and other partners sent a letter on 26 September to the Prime Minister Boyko Borissov to express concerns
On 26 September 2018, Ossigeno along with the ECPMF partners (Osservatorio Balcani e Caucaso Transeuropa- OBCT, SEEMO , Index on Censorship and IPI) sent an open letter to the Bulgarian Prime Minister to express their concerns over the arrest that took place on 13 September 2018 and seizure of the mobile phones of two investigative journalists, Dimitar Stoyanov e Attila Biro. They were released a couple of hours later.
Bivol and Rise Project had reported on the alleged corruption just days earlier as part of an investigative project financially supported by the #IJ4EU programme, which is funded by the European Commission through the International Press Institute (IPI) and the European Centre for Press and Media (ECPMF) to provide financial support to cross-border investigative reporting in the EU.
Ossigeno and partners urged the government, in line with Bulgaria’s international human rights obligations, to ensure that the reporters investigating this case can continue their work free from any intimidation or threat and to guarantee their physical safety as well as that of all journalists in Bulgaria. They also urged the Bulgarian Prime Minister to make clear that authorities themselves should be investigating the alleged wrongdoing uncovered by Bivol and Rise Project instead of harassing the journalists, who have performed a valuable public service.
The full test of the letter can be read here