This morning, Iosif Siaredzich, the editor-in-chief of one of the oldest independent newspapers, published a farewell letter on its Telegram channel. In the letter, he announces his resignation prompted by his age. The letter also states that he has transferred the site’s rights to another person and the online media will remain active.
“I will turn 75 in a couple of months. Like it or not, your age and health make you stop the heavy daily work. The circumstances also do not favor vigorous activity,” Iosif Siaredzich wrote.
He remembers the challenges that the publishing team of one of the oldest independent newspapers had to overcome.
“You, the loyal backers of Narodnaya Volia, are well aware of the disgraceful tactics employed by certain factions to divide us. Initially, they declined printing services and, recently, they revoked the registration certificate of the newspaper. Notably, the newspaper had not received any warnings from the Ministry of Information, the General Prosecutor’s Office, or the Presidential Administration for over a decade.”
These sad lines touch the hearts of readers, journalists, and speakers. Narodnaya Volia has been a symbol of the free press in Belarus for many years. It appeared to withstand the test of time and government oppression. Yet, the newspaper faced issues with printing and distribution, followed by attacks on the website.
Iosif Siaredzich summarizes that the publication, which was a model for all Belarusian media, was destroyed without reason.
The former editor-in-chief emphasizes in his farewell letter:
“We at Narodnaya Volia have not betrayed our integrity, freedom of speech, or our motherland! We will continue to remain the same!”
The legendary Belarusian journalist thanks his readers and promises to stay connected to them, but is leaving the editorial office.
What will become of Narodnaya Volia which now operates as an online media? Iosif Siaredzich officially transferred the ownership rights for the website nv-online.info to another individual, whose name was not specified.
He assures that the digital platform will remain the source of truthful information for Belarusians.
Iosif Siaredzich has been in charge of Narodnaya Volia newspaper for 28 years, ever since it started in July 1995. In his goodbye message, he described himself as a journalist who has spent 56 years in this profession.
Thank you, Mr. Siaredzich! Your work was useful, informative, and interesting!