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  • PPF concerned over detainment of Belarusian Journalists

    August 9, 2018

    Alexan­der Lukashenko

    Pres­i­dent of Belarus


    Pak­istan Press Foun­da­tion (PPF), an inde­pen­dent non-gov­ern­men­tal insti­tu­tion com­mit­ted to pro­mot­ing and defend­ing free­dom of expres­sion is con­cerned over the raid on media out­lets and detain­ment of jour­nal­ists on Tues­day, August 7, in Min­sk.

    Accord­ing to Belaru­sian Asso­ci­a­tion of Jour­nal­ists (BAJ), on the morn­ing of August 7 police offi­cers raid­ed the news­rooms of news por­tal Tut.by, news agency Bela­PAN and Navu­ka (Sci­ence) news­pa­per locat­ed in the build­ing of the Belaru­sian Acad­e­my of Sci­ences.

    The arrest­ed jour­nal­ists are Tat­siana Kar­avenko­va and Andrei Ser­a­da from Bela­PAN and Mary­na Zolata­va, Han­na Kalty­hi­na, Ulyana Babayed, Hali­na Ulasik, Dzmit­ry Bobryk, Han­na Yer­ma­chonak, Yauheniya Beraz­iuk, Lud­mi­la Chek­ina from Tut.by. After inter­ro­ga­tion five jour­nal­ists were released in the evening while oth­ers are still under cus­tody.

    The police lodged a crim­i­nal case for ille­gal access to com­put­er infor­ma­tion under Arti­cle 349 Part 2 of the Crim­i­nal Code «Unau­tho­rized access to com­put­er infor­ma­tion».

    A report by BelTA uni­tary enter­prise is the main rea­son behind start­ing a crim­i­nal case against jour­nal­ists. BelTA faced mal­func­tions while access­ing a paid sub­scrip­tion to the ser­vices pro­vid­ed by them to one of its cus­tomers.

    The inves­tiga­tive team also searched the apart­ments of some of the jour­nal­ists includ­ing Pauliuk Byk­ous­ki, Ulyana Babayed, Han­na Yer­ma­chonak, Hali­na Ulasik, and Mary­na Zolata­va. The sum­mer house of Bela­PAN jour­nal­ist Tat­siana Kar­avenko­va in Zhodzish­ki vil­lage of Hrod­na region was also raid­ed by the team and her Min­sk apart­ment was searched on August 8.

    Jour­nal­ist Ali­ak­sei Zhukau was also detained in his house in Barau­liany along with his wife. Zhukau who is a for­mer edi­tor of Sel­skaya Has­padar­ka an agri­cul­tur­al mag­a­zine and also worked with Belarusy i Rynak Belaru­sians news­pa­per. The police also seized cam­eras and lap­tops of the jour­nal­ists.

    PPF urges the Belaru­sian author­i­ties to imme­di­ate­ly release the detained jour­nal­ists and stop harass­ing inde­pen­dent media orga­ni­za­tions and jour­nal­ists.

    I thank you for your atten­tion and will wel­come your com­ments.

    Yours sin­cere­ly,

    Owais Aslam Ali
    Sec­re­tary Gen­er­al

    Pak­istan Press Foun­da­tion (PPF)


    Press Cen­tre

    Shahrah Kamal Ataturk




    Tel: +92 21 3263 3215

    Fax: +92 21 3221 7069

    Email: owaisali@pakistanpressfoundation.org

    Web: www.pakistanpressfoundation.org

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