"Belarusian Association of Journalists" extended monitoring the coverage of the first stage of the presidential election campaign of state and independent media.
The researchers say that the current media coverage of the elections official is on the script of previous years. For example, an opposition candidate in the Belarusian television said only a few seconds of Alexander Lukashenko — a thousand times more. Whether these facts are reasons to say that so far the campaign is held picket? Do wish the power to do something to this presidential election at least outwardly looked like a fair and transparent? On These questions answers Deputy Chairman of the Belarusian Association of Journalists, lawyer Andrei Bastunets.
Tsigankov: The main conclusion of the monitoring is that this election campaign in the information sphere is no different from previous ones. All state media devote the greater part of the time only one candidate — Lukashenko, other did not notice. Can we now say that the campaign takes place in non-democratic conditions?
Bastunets: Indeed, as for the media industry, it is already possible to say that these elections take place in non-democratic conditions. After the election — it's not just that day, when the ballots thrown into the urn, it is a lengthy process. And the media should convey objective information about the candidates and their programs — then it is called elections.
However, it is impossible to say that the BAJ has monitored the election — it will be too soon. Their findings on the participation of the media and their content, we just posted for the first 10 days of monitoring.
Tsigankov: Is there a wish to power somehow fix this situation? If it aims to make these elections more democratic and it promises to Western politicians — what she will do for the remaining time to the same Western organizations have learned some progress?
Bastunets: First of all, my prediction is that the government will share the media and the actions of election commissions. They will say — we are for all the publicity. We have published the program, conducted debates have sounded their performances — we supposedly did what we could.
As for the media, it is saying that their editorial policy, and we do not get involved in it. The fact that most of these media belongs to government agencies that the heads of the media — are government officials, all of this will just be silenced. Will fix the situation? No, it will be increased rhetoric about that elections will be democratic.