Ukraine Suspends Opposition Political Parties, Zelensky Nationalizes All Privately-Owned Media Companies

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In what might appear to be a questionable moves by lovers of democracy and defenders of Ukraine, the war-torn country has suspended opposition political parties and nationalized all media.

President Volodymyr Zelensky announced on Saturday that he would nationalize and merge all Ukrainian national TV stations into a single media entity called “United News.” The purpose is plain: to disseminate only the approved messaging of the Ukrainian government.  

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Combating ‘Disinformation’

A statement from President Zelensky on the “unified information policy in martial law” reads that the purpose is:

“To establish that in martial law the implementation of a unified information policy is a priority issue of national security, which is achieved by combining all national TV channels, the program content of which consists mainly of information and / or information-analytical programs on a single information platform of strategic communication – round-the-clock information marathon “Unique news # UArazom”.

Under the guise of combatting Russian disinformation, it appears even dissenting information will be censored. 

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Banned Opposition Political Parties

In another move, Ukraine suspended 11 opposition political parties – including one that currently has 44 seats in the country’s parliament. Zelensky claims the reason for the ban is that the parties have “ties to Russia.” 

He said that the National Security and Defense Council had agreed to discontinue the activities of the parties: 

“Given the full-scale war waged by the Russian Federation and the ties of some political structures with this state, any activity of a number of political parties during the martial law is suspended.”

Zelensky’s actions drew a sarcastic response from former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, who derided him saying,

“The most democratic president of modern Ukraine has taken another step towards the western ideals of democracy. By decision of the Council for National Defence and Security, he completely banned any activity of opposition parties in Ukraine. They are not needed! Well done! Keep it up.”

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