As iMediaEthics previously reported, Ukrainian newspaper Kyiv Post blocked its traffic from the United Kingdom in December after been sued for libel. RosUkrEnergo co-owner Dmytro Firtash had filed the suit over the Kyiv Post’s July 2 article “Gas trade leaves trail of lawsuits, corruption.”
“London’s high court” has “thrown out” the suit, but the Kyiv Post won’t be immediately allowed visitors from the UK, Journalism.co.uk reported. Kyiv Post editor Brian Bonner is quoted as saying to Journalism.co.uk:
“This is the right decision and we are delighted with it. This sends a clear message to those attempting to use English libel laws where they are not appropriate. The best place to settle disputes is in the country in which they occur. I hope this ruling, combined with changes in the English libel law, will put an end to the ‘libel tourism’ that has chilled free speech around the world.
“On the advice of our lawyers, we are not removing the Kyiv Post block on UK addresses just yet.”
According to Index on Censorship, the judge rejected the libel case because Firtash’s “connections to the UK” are “too extreme. There is no substantial connection to this jurisdiction.”
Kyiv Post editor Brian Bonner told iMediaEthics in January that UK traffic accounted for about 5 percent of the site’s traffic.