Vienna, 29 June 2017 – The South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO) welcomed the decision of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) after it published that the state of Romania infringed upon the freedom of expression of a local journalist in 2007.
Feri Predescu, a journalist from Constanta, Romania, was sued in 2007 by the former mayor of the city, who she mentioned in a series of statements a year prior (August 2006) during a TV show. Despite Constanta Court’s initial ruling against the former mayor’s accusations, a later appeal was accepted and Predescu was ordered to write a public letter of apology to the former mayor, publish it in the local daily at her own cost, and pay him financially for moral damages (~11,000 EUR), as also legal expenses (~1,550 EUR).
However, it was decided on 27 June 2017 that this decision from 2007 violated Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The Romanian state was ordered to pay the journalist a sum of 14,000 EUR for material damages, as well as 4,500 EUR for moral damages.
SEEMO is a network of editors, media executives and leading journalists in South, East and Central Europe and its press freedom work is supported by the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) project, as part of a grant by the European Commission.