Nieuws Wit-Rusland

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Amnesty International publiceerde op 31 augustus 2018 een uitgebreide verklaring over de systematische onderdrukking van de persvrijheid in Wit-Rusland. Ook de online media wordt het zeer moeilijk gemaakt. Charter97 is sinds 24 januari 2018 niet meer bereikbaar vanuit Wit-Rusland, redacteuren worden met de dood bedreigd. Amnesty International doet deze oproep:

The Belarusian authorities must immediately repeal the repressive amendments to the Law on Media and bring its legislation in line with international human rights law and standards. Full and unhindered access to the website of the Charter’97 must be reinstated without delay. The authorities must stop targeting dissenting voices and ensure that any charges brought up against journalists and other media workers simply for doing their job are dropped.

Sinds 24 januari 2018 is de website van Charter97 niet meer bereikbaar vanuit Wit-Rusland (en delen van Rusland). Journalisten wordt het leven zuur gemaakt en zelfs met de dood bedreigd. Het aantal bezoekers is met meer dan de helft gedaald.  Natalja Radzina roept de bezoekers op Charter97 als onafhankelijk journalistiek medium financieel te steunen, ook omdat steun van andere (Europese) fondsen uitblijft.

Actie voor persvrijheid in Wit-Rusland in New York op 11 augustus 2018

Viasnu (mensenrechtenorganisatie Wit-Rusland) publiceerde een overzicht van de meest recente schendingen van de mensenrechten:

  • Belarusian prisons continued to hold two political prisoners: Mikhail Zhamchuzhny and Amnesty International’s prisoner of conscience Dzmitry Paliyenka. The presidential administration refused to pardon Zhamchuzhny, thus ignoring an appeal by representatives of the country’s human rights community;
  • on August 24, Henadz Fiadynich and Ihar Komlik, activists of the independent trade union REP, were convicted under Part 2, Art. 243 of the Criminal Code (tax evasion on a large scale). The union leaders were sentenced to 4 years of restricted freedom without imprisonment, without confiscation of property, but with a prohibition to hold managerial positions for 5 years. Both national and international human rights and labor organizations called on the Belarusian authorities to reverse the sentence and to stop the pressure on independent trade unions;
  • on August 7, the Investigative Committee of Belarus said that it opened a criminal case under Part 2, Art. 349 of the Criminal Code (illegal access to computer information committed out of other personal interest, which caused substantial harm) against journalists and editors of a number of Internet resources. On the same day, police searched the journalists’ apartments and the newsrooms of the media outlets, including the leading information portal TUT.BY and the independent news agency BelaPAN. At least nine journalists were detained, seven of whom were placed in the detention center for three days as suspects. These clearly repressive and disproportionate actions of the authorities caused great public interest, including outside Belarus;
  • during the month, there were numerous facts of pressure on independent journalists and bloggers, cases of arrests and administrative detention of peaceful protestors;
  • thus, the month was marked by a significant deterioration of the human rights situation in Belarus.

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