A special newsroom is to open in Bratislava, in which the best investigative journalists from Ringier Axel Springer Media, Axel Springer SE and Ringier AG will continue the work of the murdered journalist Ján Kuciak.
Kuciak worked for the Aktuality.sk website, which belongs to the Ringier Axel Springer publishing house.
“We’re currently putting together the investigative newsroom to continue with Ján’s work,” said Mark Dekan, head of the publishing house Ringier Axel Springer Media AG, as quoted by the Mediálne.sk website. “We’ll continue in the fight for freedom of speech and the observation of law and democracy.”
He was joined by Aktuality.sk’s Editor-in-Chief Peter Bárdy.
“If the aim of this crime was to discourage an independent publisher like Ringier Axel Springer Slovakia from revealing any wrongdoings, we need to say to the perpetrators: You will never browbeat us,” Bárdy said, as quoted by Mediálne.sk.
Kuciak’s last piece published by world media
The publishing house has provided several Slovak and foreign media organisations with the unfinished piece Kuciak was working on before he was murdered.
The piece deals with suspicions concerning EU fund payments within the tax system between Slovakia and Italy, linked to the Italian Mafia ‘Ndrangheta. He was collaborating with the Czech Centre for Investigative Journalism, the Italian journalist organisation - the Investigative Project of Italy, and the international organisation - the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP).
It was published by several influential foreign media organisations, including Bild, Die Welt, Blick, Le Temps, Politico, Business Insider, Newsweek, Blikk and Fakt, the TASR newswire reported.
Some of the international media shared the report published on the OCCRP’s website.
With this step, Ringier wanted to highlight the work of Kuciak and his colleagues on the investigation team.
“Publishing this story will not bring Ján and Martina back to life,” Dekan said, as quoted by Mediálne.sk. “Nor it will explain to their families and friends what cannot be explained. But it shows respect to Ján Kuciak who risked his own life to clarify the facts. We want to express our stance which is that nobody will intimidate us, the independent publishers.”
Online condolence book
Ringier Axel Springer Slovakia has meanwhile launched an online condolence book where people can leave their personal messages.
“Ján Kuciak (27), one of our most talented investigative Journalists at aktuality.sk has been murdered,” it reads. “Jan was a good person, a friend and a passionate journalist. With his work he wanted to fight for justice and make the lives of people in Slovakia a bit better. His fiancée Martina Kušnírová (27) was also murdered. They recently moved into their new home in Bratislava and wanted to get married.”
2. Mar 2018 at 6:35 | Compiled by Spectator staff