On 12th August 2011, the Vilnius District Administrative Court received an appeal against the decision of the inspector of journalistic ethics concerning the case of the article “In defence of Polish schools in Lithuania”, published on the internet website of wilnoteka.lt. The complaint against the portal was submitted by Kazimieras Garšva, president of the Association “Vilnija”, who accused Wilnoteka of misleading the society about the real situation of Polish education in Lithuania and of inciting national discord.
The concerned parents of the children from Polish schools in Lithuania, organised within the social movement Forum of Parents of Polish Schools in Lithuania, sent an open letter and a petition to the authorities of Lithuania and Poland, in which they formulated their concerns about the amended Act on Education, considered by the Seym of the Republic of Lithuania. Wilnoteka edited given text, added its own comments, editorial opinion and called for joining the action aiming at collecting signatures under the open letter. On 11th July, the inspector of journalistic ethics by order of the decision punished the internet portal wilnoteka.lt for publishing the article “In defence of Polish schools in Lithuania”. The inspector concluded that the portal violated journalistic ethics in the part concerning one-sided presentation of information. The publication was accused of being biased, superficial and that it did not present the arguments in support of the changes in the act. The decision was published in the Lithuanian Journal of Law (J.o.L. 15th July 2011) and on the website of the Inspection. Wilnoteka was also obliged to publish the decision on its website.
At the moment, the case is under the patronage of the European Foundation of Human Rights, whose main goal is protection of human rights, regardless of nationality, race, gender, faith or social status.
European Foundation of Human Rights