Afrique Ameriques Asie Moyen-Orient Internet Nations unies
 
Belarus28 April 2008

Police seize copies of independent weekly based in Vitebsk

Copies of an independent Vitebsk-based weekly that had been printed in Smolensk, a city 145 km away, because of the inability to print them locally were seized by police as they were being brought into Vitebsk on a bus by opposition activist Valery Shchukin on 24 April. The activist had to be hospitalised with high blood pressure when the police used force.

“We condemn the constant harassment of the independent press in Belarus and we call on the authorities to return the copies of Vitebsky Kuryer M that were seized by the police,” Reporters Without Borders said.

Shchukin was getting off a bus with the copies of the Vitebsky Kuryer M in a bag when police who had been following the bus asked him to surrender them. They used force when he refused to comply, precipitating a hypertension attack that required Shchukin’s hospitalisation.

The police claim that Shchukin broke a newspaper distribution law. The staff of Vitebsky Kuryer M decided to bring out an issue with a print run of about 1,000 copies after a long spell with no issue being published because of financial problems.

If the staff had not brought out the issue, the information ministry could have cancelled their licence under a law providing for automatic loss of licence for a newspaper that fails to publish for a year. They had to get it printed in Smolensk because the only Vitebsk-based printer, which is state-owned, refused to print the issue.




  In this country
6 March - Belarus
Call for end to unofficial ban on foreign journalists
26 February - Belarus
Judge orders two issues of cultural magazine seized and destroyed
29 January - Belarus
In show of bad faith, government again refuses to issue press accreditation to Radio Racyja journalists
27 November - Belarus
Amid signs of tentative liberalisation, government urged to do more and to resist temptation to control Internet
26 September - Belarus
Media coverage of election campaign ignores political debates and opposition

in the annual report
Belarus - Annual Report 2008
Belarus - Annual report 2007
Belarus - 2006 Annual report

Europe press releases
4 June - Kosovo
Rrokum TV station still excluded by national broadcasting network
2 June - Ukraine
Potential witness’s death deals severe blow to probe into journalist’s murder
2 June - Turkey
Woman journalist held for past five weeks on baseless charge of link to armed group
2 June - Russia
Journalist seeks asylum in Finland after being convicted for prison torture articles
29 May - France
Regrettable decision by appeal court to lift ban on magazine only if offending photo is covered up

Reports
5 February 2009 - Bulgaria
“Resignation or resistance, Bulgaria’s embattled press hesitates”
28 January 2009 - Russia
Fact-finding visit : Moscow double murder may have been linked to November attack on local newspaper editor
27 June 2008 - Turkey
Investigation report into the detention of journalist Haci Bogatekin, imprisoned for more than two months and facing ten and a half years in prison
archives

Sign the petitions
Uzbekistan
Jusuf Ruzimuradov

Europe archives
2009 archives
2008 archives
2007 archives
2006 archives
2005 archives
2004 archives
2003 archives
2002 archives
2001 archives
2000 archives