Free space decreases

Belarus ranks 188th out of 195-minute free speech in the index for 2007, compiled by the South American research center "Freedom House". Either free media in Belarus?
According to the Belarusian Association of Journalists, in the country there are about 30-independent political media. Half of them excluded from the state distribution system, and subscriptions. Some are required to be printed outside Belarus. On the way to the reader circulations often detained by the militia.
Circulation "Vitebsk Courier", which was carried out in Belarus Smolensk printing, hitherto the police. According to representatives of the editorial Olga Karach, authorities do not want, that is independent information reaches people:
"They just panic fear that the newspaper will appear in Vitebsk. Newspaper did not come out for almost a year. They really had hoped that the newspaper and would not come out. And a year later they relaxed her close. They tried to stop the spread of such makarom be independent press in the Vitebsk region. Vitebsk regional printing house refused to print. And Publishing Vitebsk region also refused to print. We are almost a year courts Executive Committee. A month later, as we have been re-registered, executive committee without explanation terminated the harsh circumstances of this re-registration. was just so many obstacles for this year … "
March 27 and 28 in several cities in Belarus KGB raided-independent journalists working for the "European Radio", "Radio Radio Station" and channel "Belsat". Prior to office equipment and other property confiscated NOT vernuta.Ulady been explained that the searches were carried out in connection with a criminal case with respect to the insinuations of the president. Chief editor of the newspaper "Narodnaya Volya" Kalinkina:
"I think it’s just a stupid act by the authorities to intimidate journalists and virtually ban the profession. It’s just unacceptable in the 21st century. "
According to the lawyer BAJ Misha Pastukhova, authorities denied virtually independent media’s right to exist:
"They do not give any disk imaging, surgeries. Journalists grab when they perform duties, cause the prosecuting authorities. Practically, journalists were not allowed to work. Authorities under various pretexts, do not give the ability to open new media. During the last 10 years has not entered any-independent socio-political newspaper. Quantity-independent media is reduced from year to year. "
But in the budget for this year municipal support of the official media was 74 million dollars.
Journalist municipal channel BT Dmitry Kostin implies:
"I think what we are talking — is enough to show that there is freedom. You work in Belarus, we are working in the country at least some of the planet. This is ours. Access to various sources of disk imaging, it seems to me, also likely. "
Lawyer Mike Shepherds states that freedom of conventional municipal media:
"They are under the control of the country. Maybe this control in less than are independent publications. But he still acts. This is especially true of electrical melyyav. Belarus remains outside the European standards in the field of freedom of expression. We practically do not have this freedom. "
Until journalists are punished according to the Criminal Code for innuendo, insulting the president or representative of authority. So is independent newspaper "New time" paid Senator Nicholas Charginets pecuniary harm about 23 thousand dollars. And for reprinting the Danish cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad journalist "Zgoda" Alexander Sdvizhkou to 3 years maximum security prison — "for inciting hatred reiligiynay."
On the question whether there is media freedom in Belarus, chief editor of the online newspaper "Solidarity" Alexander Starikevich Pronunciation:
"I would not put it as a question: yes or no, because we are still talking. And it is to get on the air of Radio Liberty. The question is — how much of it. She, of course, strongly enough. Moreover, this space decreases "thanks" to the efforts of the authorities. "
"I think in Belarus most controlled zone — this particular sphere of media. Freedom of speech, unfortunately, in our country not. And I do not see signs that the recent situation may change. " Tags: media, freedom of publication, are independent, press

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