Comment by the Information and Press Department on the Minneapolis Police attack on Mikhail Turgiyev, RIA Novosti Correspondent
We are concerned about the increase in the number of instances of police violence and the unjustified detention of journalists during their coverage of the protests that broke out in the United States after the killing of George Floyd. We consider it unacceptable for US law enforcement officials to use special equipment ̵ rubber bullets and tear gas ̵ against media representatives after they have presented their press cards. In particular, we regard the case of Minneapolis police officers directing pepper spray into the face of RIA Novosti correspondent Mikhail Turgiyev, despite identifying him as a journalist, as a manifestation of unreasonable brutality.
It is impermissible for law enforcement personnel to attack media employees who are performing their professional duty. We remind the US authorities of their international obligations to ensure the safety and unhindered activities of journalists, as well as freedom of speech and equal access to information for everyone.
We presume that the US authorities will conduct a thorough investigation into these incidents.
We urge relevant international organisations and human rights NGOs to properly respond to this arbitrariness.