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Polish Controversial Media Law Passed

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Polish President Andrzej Duda vetoed a controversial media ownership law. However, critics said it aims to silence a US-owned TV station critical of the government.

The law would have prevented companies from outside the European Economic Area from controlling Polish media outlets.

If passed, the US-based Discovery group would have had to sell its stake in the news network, TVN24.

Officials argued the law intended to limit the influence of hostile states.

The ruling Law and Justice Party (PiS) has long said foreign corporations hold too much power over Polish media. It further rushed the bill through parliament earlier this month.

But critics said the move was intended to attack TVN24, Poland’s most watched news channel and a network whose reporters have often been critical of the conservative government.

Poland Accused of Abandoning Migrants at Frontier

Amnesty International has earlier accused Poland of illegally pushing back asylum-seekers into Belarus.

According to the group, Polish authorities pushed back a group of 32 Afghan asylum-seekers in late August.

The group included a 15-year-old girl.

It said that satellite imagery and photographs showed that the group was on the Polish side of the border on August 18.

“Amnesty International believes that this movement may be evidence of an illegal push-back, as it appears to have occurred while armed Polish border guards surrounded the refugees’ makeshift camp,” it said in a statement.

“Poland has been blocking this group of people at the border in deplorable conditions for weeks. Our analysis proves conclusively that their position has changed from Poland to Belarus overnight on 18 August and that they were therefore probably victims of unlawful forcible removal,” Eve Geddie, Director of Amnesty International’s Office to the European Institutions, said in a statement.

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