Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Abdymok has more on Yushchenko's son scandal, including the complete translation of what Yushchenko said at yesterday's press conference.

Many people found the following passage especially hard to swallow:

however, if every day starts with a camera following my son, police being called, a camera being on till late at night, these are not journalists. as a father i'd like to say these are the people doomed to experience the same in their lives. or the generation of their children.

you can't do business as dirty as that. so i told my son, "son, i can only alleviate your soul with this advice: learn to defend yourself! learn to defend yourself! a bill? get that bill from the restaurant. how many were you there, what did you eat, what did you drink? put that bill in that journalist's mug, and then go to court! and learn to defend yourself!"

Maybe Yushchenko was drunk yesterday? And then he sobered up and asked his press secretary to write a reconciliation letter to Ukrainska Pravda (in Ukrainian)?

Still, 62 journalists have (so far) signed a petition demanding that Yushchenko "publicly apologize to Ukrainska Pravda reporter Serhiy Leshchenko" and "answer journalists' questions about his family's income and expenses." The petition (in Ukrainian) is posted on Ukrainska Pravda site.

- Update #1: 113 journalists have already signed the petition.

- Update #2: 10:30 pm - 183 journalists.

- Update #3: 11 pm - 197 journalists.

On a different note, Oleh Yeltsov - who hasn't signed the petition yet - reveals (in Russian) that it was actually he who was supposed to break the "son of god" story:

[...] I, Oleh Yeltsov, declare with all responsibility that it was me who came up with the idea for this story approximately three months ago, after a conversation with one of the regulars of a [Kyiv] night club. From him, I learned a lot of curious details about Andriy Yushchenko's night life. I offered [this person] to write a story for [this] "Tema" site. [I] had a preliminary talk with his source of information, who was promised a rather humble gift, and the author himself was supposed to be paid a humble $30 (pardon me, but a freelance journalist's income does not allow to spend more). Due to objective reasons, the story's publication was being postponed, and then... it appeared in [Ukrainska Pravda]. The reason for this is not known: either the author wanted to have more impact, or to make more money. [...]


  1. For everything there is a backlash - there is now an article on the UP site from a journalist regarding why he did not sign the letter to the President.

    07.30.05 - 2:12 am

  2. Yes, but it's a very wordy piece and, though I remember not disagreeing with some of his points, I can't remember what the main point was... I think it goes something like, please don't get hysterical, it'll surely get worse before it gets any better, it's only the beginning...

    07.30.05 - 10:51 am