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  • “A parody of justice”. Foreign human rights defenders commented on the harsh sentence of the Belarusian journalist

    In response to a Belarusian court sentencing journalist Pavel Padabed to four years in prison on Friday, June 30, the Committee to Protect Journalists issued the following statement.

    “The sen­tenc­ing of Belaru­sian jour­nal­ist Pavel Pad­abed to four years’ impris­on­ment after a hasty two-day tri­al is a trav­es­ty of jus­tice,” said Gul­noza Said, CPJ’s Europe and Cen­tral Asia pro­gram coor­di­na­tor, in Ams­ter­dam. “Author­i­ties should drop all charges against Pad­abed, release him imme­di­ate­ly along­side all oth­er impris­oned jour­nal­ists, and stop retal­i­at­ing against mem­bers of the press for their report­ing.”

    On Fri­day, a court in Min­sk, the cap­i­tal, con­vict­ed Pad­abed of par­tic­i­pat­ing in an extrem­ist for­ma­tion and sen­tenced him to four years at the request of state pros­e­cu­tors, accord­ing to reports by the banned human rights group Vias­na and the Belaru­sian Asso­ci­a­tion of Jour­nal­ists, an advo­ca­cy and trade group oper­at­ing from exile. Padabed’s tri­al began Wednes­day.

    Belarus was the world’s fifth worst jail­er of jour­nal­ists, with at least 26 jour­nal­ists behind bars on Decem­ber 1, 2022, when CPJ con­duct­ed its most recent prison cen­sus. In May, author­i­ties sim­i­lar­ly sen­tenced jour­nal­ist Yauhen Merkis to four years on extrem­ism charges.

    Read more:

    “We will continue until the repression stops. International Press Institute Launches Twitter Project on Belarus

    Tatsiana Pytsko prosecuted for helping her husband, videographer Viachaslau Lazarau

    “Turkmenization is underway in Belarus.” Experts comment on situation with independent journalism in Belarus based on new BAJ and JFJ report


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