Concerns in London over the security of the boss of the Bellingcat site

The executive director of the Bellingcat investigative site Christo Grozev, a pet peeve of the Kremlin, said on Friday that he was prevented from attending the Baftas ceremony by the British police, who were worried about possible “hostile intentions of foreign states “. On Twitter, Christo Grozev said he was “surprised” to discover that he and his family were “banned” by the British police from attending the presentation of the Baftas on Sunday, where the documentary is named Navalny, devoted to the opponent of Vladimir Putin imprisoned after being poisoned. Reason given according to the journalist: “we represent a risk to public safety”.

London police stressed that “the fact that some journalists have to face the hostile intentions of foreign states while in the UK is a reality which concerns us”, declining to comment on the safety of a individual or the advice given to him. “We are committed to working with our intelligence partners to investigate these threats and take other action to ensure the safety of those affected,” Scotland Yard said in a statement.

“The voices of journalists are muffled instead of being amplified”

London police further stress that they cannot ban anyone from attending a ‘private event’, which is the responsibility of the organisers, acknowledging that their advice may mean that organizers have ‘difficult choices to make. to decide how to reduce the security risks of their event”. “The safety of all our guests and staff at the ceremony is always our top priority and we have strong and appropriate safety arrangements in place every year,” the Baftas said.

Placed on Russia’s wanted list, the 53-year-old journalist also highlighted the dangers facing journalists, not only from “murderous dictators”, “but also from the fact that the voices of journalists are silenced, instead of being amplified, by the civilized world they are trying to serve”.

Created in July 2014 by a British blogger, Eliot Higgins, the Bellingcat site, based in the Netherlands, specializes in journalism based on the analysis of data accessible to everyone online. The site notably investigated the crash of flight MH17, which killed 298 people in eastern Ukraine in 2014, the alleged involvement of Russian intelligence in the poisonings of double agent Sergei Skripal on British soil. , or the opponent Alexeï Navalny.

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