G7 concerned about data hacking of journalists in Ukraine

MOSCOW – Ambassadors to Ukraine from the Group of Seven countries are expressing concern about the publication by hackers of the names and contact information of journalists who have reported from rebel-controlled eastern Ukraine.

Hackers from a group called Mirotvorets (Peacekeeper) said they had gained access to computers used by the Russia-backed separatists to register journalists working in the conflict zone. They said they felt it was necessary to publish the list “because these journalists collaborate with fighters from terrorist organizations.”

The embassy of Japan, the current chair of the G-7, says Thursday that the characterization “endangers the personal security of those affected and Ukraine’s hard-won media freedom.” It says “publishing the information contravenes Ukrainian law.”

The two-year conflict in eastern Ukraine between the government and Russia-backed rebels has killed 9,300 people.