On January 9, the Lieninski District Court of Minsk started to hear the closing arguments in Viasna trial. The prosecution is seeking to sentence the Nobel Prize laureate Ales Bialiatski to 12 years in a penal colony.
Today, February 8, Hrodna Regional Court Judge Dzmitry Bubenchyk sentenced journalist and Polish minority activist Andrzej Poczobut to eight years of imprisonment.
8 years in prison. Andrzej Poczobut’s conviction is revenge for dissent, says BAJ and demands the journalist’s release
On 8 February, Hrodna Regional Court sentenced Andrzej Poczobut, a prominent Belarusian journalist, publicist, and member of the Union of Poles in Belarus, to eight years in prison. Poczobut was found guilty of encouraging actions aimed at harming the national security of the Republic of Belarus and inciting ethnic hostility.
BAJ nominates National Union of Journalists of Ukraine for UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize
Last year, the Belarusian Association of Journalists won the UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize. 46 countries, as well as many journalistic organizations globally, nominated BAJ for this award. Among them was the National Union of Journalists of Ukraine, BAJ’s close partner.
The security forces detained Anastasia Sharkevich who administered the Narodnaya Volya Telegram channel, as reported by a pro-regime Telegram channel. Zerkalo informs that Sharkevich is accused of calling for blocking traffic, mass riots, and other illegal actions.
The individual communication is filed under the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).
Aliaksandr Lukashuk, RFE/RL Belarus director, is leaving the agency, Radio Liberty reports.
February 4 was to mark the release date of cameraman Pavel Padabed from 15-day administrative detention. However, the Belarusian Association of Journalists found out that he was transferred to Minsk pre-trial detention center and a criminal case was brought against him instead.
The achievement of sustainable development goals in Belarus is undoubtedly impossible without independent media and journalists allowing the general public access to information of public interest. However, the state of media freedom and the right of access to information in Belarus is deteriorating year by year. The 2020 presidential election period has been a critical milestone that launched a large-scale policy process against independent media, accompanied by official attempts to control all information dissemination, as well as suppress dissent.
In an unusual utopian column, KYKY.org media announced that Viktar Malisheuski, a well-known Belarusian journalist, became the new editor-in-chief of the publication.