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International Internet Magazine. Baltic States news & analytics Monday, 21.09.2020, 06:29

Lithuanian JustMin to end press censorship

BC, Vilnius, 13.05.2014.Print version
Lithuanian Minister of Justice Juozas Bernatonis has initiated amendments to the Law on Value Added Tax which would prohibit Lithuania's Ethics Commission of Journalists and Publishers (LZLEK), which is formed by private entities, to censor the printed press, informs LETA/ELTA.

Amendments should be registered in the Parliament this week and are hoped to be adopted in the spring session.

 

"The freedom of the press is one of the cornerstones of democratic values, if it is negated then other values and ideas which we foster become unprotected and vulnerable.

 

In the previous parliamentary term, in 2012, the Seimas led by conservatives amended the legislation and established a provision that newspapers, journals and other periodicals may be applied different VAT tariffs – the standard 21% or the lower one of 9%. What tariff is applied to what newspaper or journal depends not on any democratically elected institution or court but instead on LZLEK.

 

The aforementioned law brought back 9% VAT exemption rate which the conservatives had themselves revoked earlier, but it applies only to those periodicals which keep to professional ethics. What periodicals meet the standards of professional ethics is also decided by LZLEK.






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