Photojournalist Yevhen Halych, from Kolomyya, has disappeared in the Donbas, the publication Telekrytyka reports on April 23.
Halych had received a travel grant from Telekrytyka (funded by the Renaissance fund) for covering events in Eastern Ukraine and was on assignment for the Ivano-Frankivsk newspaper Reporter. The publication was informed of his disappearance by activists at Euromaidan SOS that had been contacted by Halych’s wife.
Oleksandr Hrytsenko, the grant manager for Telekrytyka, confirmed the disappearance. According to Hrytsenko, last night, April 22, the wife of Yevhen Halych, Oksana, telephoned him to report that she has had no contact with her husband for over a day.
Yevhen Halych went on assignment with his brother Hennadiy Halych, from Sumy. Hennadiy Halych, before all contact with him was lost, used a code word with his family that indicated danger. The last city that the Halych brothers visited was Horlivka. According to Yevhen’s family, several unsuccessful attempts have been made to use his brother’s bank card.
Yevhen Halych, who had received a grant to travel to the Kharkiv, Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, left for his trip on April 17. He had several letters of recommendation with him from various editorials boards that guaranteed the publication of his future materials. A recommendation for the trip was provided by the Ivano-Frankivsk newspaper Reporter.
“He was on assignment from his editors, and Telekrytyka only covered the travel expenses from the Renaissance fund grant,” explained Oleksandr Hrytsenko.
According the Olena Havrych, the wife of Hennadiy Halych, the two men disappeared on April 22, in Horlivka
“The last call from Hennadiy came at 11:00 am with the information that they were in Horlivka and that there was unrest in the city. The code word that I knew was mentioned. He repeated that word three times and then suddenly hung up. At 11:40 I tried to phone my husband but the call was rejected. At 12:15 I received a text message stating ‘I am busy, will call.’ All subsequent attempts to contact him or his brother Yevhen have been unsuccessful,” she said.
Olena stated that Yevhen Halych had with him documentation verifying his credentials as a freelance journalist for the Ivano-Frankivsk newspaper Reporter.
“My husband, Hennadiy, offered to accompany Yevhen to the ‘troubled’ regions in his car, a Nissan X-Trail, number BM 5545 AI, eggplant color with an airbrushed picture of a black panther across the two doors on the passenger side,” Olena said.
The mobile phones of Yevhen and Hennadiy Halych have been turned off (“subscriber cannot take your call”).
Families of the two men are asking for any information about the missing brothers. Callers should contact: Olena (wife of Hennadiy) at 0503271799; or Oksana (wife of Yevhen) at 0990973888.
As previously reported, several journalists have been taken hostage in the Donbas in the last few days. On April 13, in Slovyansk, unknown persons kidnapped from his apartment journalist Artem Deyneha, who was reporting on the assault of the local SBU office. On April 16, in Slovyansk, so-called “separatists” kidnapped journalist Serhiy Lefter, an observer with the fund “Open Dialogue.” On April 21, foreign journalists Paul Gogo and Cosimo Attanasio, as well as the Belarusian correspondent Dmytro Galko, of the newspaper Noviy Chas, were detained. The three foreign journalists were later released. On April 22, it was reported that the journalist Simon Ostrovsky, of the American publication Vice, was taken hostage in Slovyansk.