Public editor week Jeanne Litvin headed "Belarusian Association of Journalists" topped in 1995 when the media are independent for the first time had to be printed abroad and almost started alternate pursuit of a free press, its repression of the information space of the country. Coincidence that Mrs. Lytvyn ordered our journalists prepare aimed at the transfer of certain subjects — "Why is society does not respond to the restriction of freedom of speech?"
Version editors’ indifference to the press — the result of its return during the Soviet era "
According to the South American research center «Freedom House», in press freedom ranking Belarus ranks this year 188th in the world (out of 195-minute), which is two notches lower than last year. For many years, it is in the category of countries where free media or none, or distributed in small amounts. Even in the midst of free countries, where the creators of the report calculated 64, Belarus is close to the end of the list, in the company of Uzbekistan, Cuba, Turkmenistan, Burma and North Korea — it closes the list.
"Vitebsk Courier" did not go back the two years — Received strangled the inability to do the distribution and the lack of a legal address. Past Editor Vladimir Bazan convinced that press freedom in Belarus does not: say, that kind of power.
Correspondent"Can a society somehow influence, to respond to restrictions on freedom of the press?"
Bazan"In principle, yes. But it will not do. Other words they like and do not care if they are sitting in the kitchen, then outraged. But to himself to do something — no, no!"
Correspondent"Were there any measures performance in your defense?"
Bazan"Yes. Was a letter signed tyschami people, so what? On the other hand, no one came to the rally. They commiserate: every day in the town meet people who they say me compliments about what happened. But none of the others No one came out …, unfortunately. "
Tatiana MelnichukTatyana Melnychuk eight years as editor-independent newspaper "Belarusian youth" — from 1994 to 2002. Later weekly closed.
"I think that after the period of perestroika, when the printed word was vzahlyn when the printed word could not enjoy when believed everything that is printed here and then, with the return under certain mandatory criteria Russian feelings that reads print because it is profitable and how to hunt heads, then it is the indifferent attitude of the printed word.
On the one hand, if you really push, run to the press, journalists. On the other reigns this idea: "Well, Brasov, states that want to …" And so, maybe the community does not have a specific need to protect journalists. And the community has no particular experience of protecting printed organs and free speech. And because by themselves for themselves journalists, the media, and for themselves alone community that needs help journalists, media outlets, but not yet able to realize it. "
Chief Editor of "The Evening Brest" Vladimir Shparlo convinced that disputes concerning dependent and-independent media have no foundation. By the way, the newspaper — survivor, she is already 16 years old. Sovereign Shparlo convinced
Vladimir Shparlo"The newspaper can be independent and can boldly speak openly only in one case: if it is independent financially. And yet with all this there is one condition — the editor has a certain boldness. In the meantime, a certain portion of my fellow journalists not very artistically suited to its own journalistic mission. Fight for freedom, independence means first fight for professionalism. And from what I see in the camp of independent media, and municipal — first immense ambition. "
Correspondent"Your newspaper — is independent financially?"
Shparlo"Yes, all 16 years."
Correspondent"Not so long ago you received the" Golden bukovku ", the highest merit Ministry disk imaging …"
Shparlo"We generally do not see now is unreal. Listed with us all. We received congratulations from the Governor Brest with merit. Yet, it never prevented openly and boldly write about the problems."
Correspondent"Have you had difficulties with the authorities can, because any sharp materials?"
Shparlo"Bottlenecking there have been many. If we’re wrong, then find within themselves the courage to admit their mistakes, if not mistaken — could justify each his innocence, including through the tribunal. Yet there was no such year, so we did not have lawsuits . "
Gregory Sokolowski 10 years was the editor of "To the glory of the motherland." At present — Deputy Chairman of the Belarusian Union of Journalists. Convinced that press freedom in Belarus is and indicator — stalls overflowing shelves "Belsayuzdruk."
Correspondent"But for all that non-state political newspapers in the booth can not buy."
Sokolovsky"I do municipal media, I do not know how to deal in private. I know your own situation. But I do not remember that someone has complained to us that someone somewhere did not publish. There were no such cases. Even the "Komsomolskaya Pravda" has appealed to us, and we have helped, although it is not ours, but because of corporate solidarity "
Correspondent"Why do you share" our — not ours? "
Sokolovsky"I say, our Union, who pay fees, stroll to the meetings."
Correspondent"Just the days of independent newspaper" Evening Brest "received" Golden Letter ". Why do not you cooperate with non-state newspapers, why such a separation occurs? "
Sokolovsky"Shparlo, chief editor of" The Evening Brest "- a member of our Union."
Correspondent"Do you have any contacts with the Belarusian Association of Journalists?"
Sokolovsky"At the moment, for some reason was not. Somehow we have met several times, and later all died, I do not know on whose reason. But we neither them nor they have nowhere to criticize, not substitute, you honestly do their business. "
Commented Jeanne Litvin:
"I believe that one of the characteristics of our time — it’s lack of response to the closure of newspapers, on the trials of journalists in society … nothing happened even after the murder of Veronika Cherkasova!
BACKGROUND? One of them — disabled people’s minds. They are not ready to defend their press, and not a lot of people who understand that, defending the rights of journalists defending the right of people to receive disk imaging. The right to own real information on readers choice. It is appropriate word Valentine Akudovich: Taciturn most people there without us.
On the other hand, it is difficult to respond to what you know is not enough. To be independent press trivial no access. Only one common example: none of 63 libraries Pinsk not receive the independent press. And if not her ability to be a reader, how to defend it?
Well, rescue this situation, it seems to me, understanding first free press journalists need to maintain a dialogue with society. "
Version readers: "Journalists are many, they are not and we are able to solve their problems …"
By the number of newspapers published and distributed in the country in terms of the 1st inmate Belarus — in the midst of European favorites. To suppor
t the state media from the national budget spent about 5 billion rubles. Minister disk imaging sovereign Rusakievich recently boasted: "In our country, newspapers are published more than in China. And thank God Means printed word need, people read a lot." And what think about freedom of speech and media in Belarus readers themselves?
Prince"Freedom of speech should be in every democratic society. Essentially, that the government supported the freedom of speech, which we have not. And if we have freedom of speech, it is very limited and controlled. You may recall that there are independent media, which, due to persecution by the authorities are not very popular. I wish that we, our media have developed more actively, so that this process is supported by the government. Then, I’m sure the response from the community will be very positive. "
Correspondent"Either free media working in Belarus?"
Another sire"I was never interested in this issue because I am very far from this. Maybe yes, maybe no. I do not know, to tell the truth."
Correspondent"Do you come out to the street in a symbol of solidarity with the journalists?"
Mrs."I do not know for sure what is not. Because I have my own worries and problems, and at their own. Lot of them, they can decide for themselves and merge their prepyadstviya yourself."
Correspondent"Why people do not advocate freedom of speech in Belarus?"
Prince"With regard to freedom of speech, our situation is quite fascinating. Can say that it is limited. And why people do not oppose, it is also a big issue. I think the problem we have with the people. People either do not behold the the need, or just afraid of something. "
Expressions commented political analyst Valery Bulgakov:
"In the midst of Belarusians no such generation, who lived in the era of true media freedom. Subsequent reason — forced to depoliticize society. Those voices have been raised, it seems to me just illustrate this thesis. Politically correct in today’s Belarus is to grow your own kids and dig their logging site . And, accordingly, do not think about things that are not within the competence of the average Belarusian ".
Commented Jeanne Litvin:
"Experts BAJ note that journalists from time to time lose their sense of reality. Nonstate even newspapers they say to those who agree with them. They do not seek to expand the audience. And this is one of the problems of the independent press — again. Turned out that between perceptions of journalists and audience expectations, there is a certain distance. At the same time fundamentally moments.
This all suggests that we need to be more responsive to the expectations of their own fans. Would be achieved — will become more apparent and venerated in our society. "
Version politicians: "People realized: if this government does not protect them free press"
Three years back the BAJ announced Gorodenschinu "area defeat the press." Were closed by the tribunal or otherwise strangled in the regional capital, and Smorgon Vawkavysk "race", "Exchange disk imaging", "day", "local newspaper", "newcomer Smorgon newspaper."
Markevich known in the field not only politically active — he edited Grodno newspaper "The Chase", which lasted until the 2001 presidential election. Pre-election edition was arrested, then the economic tribunal finished edition, and later the editor and correspondent Paul Mazhejka punished by restriction of freedom for libel against President Lukashenko.
"I remember when we were judged to process hundreds of people came. Authority was obliged to several 10’s of the policemen stand in a cordon — just to avoid the tribunal people."
Markevich concludes spoken and concludes:
"Because to say that Belarusian society does not react, it is incorrect. Reacts and intensively enough. Another thing that segodnyaschy authorities simply do not ask the feedback from the community. Almost immediately inverted formula Kalinowski. He urged, that was not the people for the government and the government for the people. And with all the Lukashenko regime is opposite. And wielding massive repressive apparatus of the regime virtually ignores the needs of the people. "
Newspapers in Grodno not only strangled, and not allowed to register new. And what now? Chapter Executive Committee Sergei ideological service Dubovets said to us that the newspapers — nothing new, but on April 29 registered urban channel. However, it made city council member Alexander Lasminski, and hope for some kind of alternative information is perhaps not necessary.
Grodnenets, member BSDP Vladimir Kiselevich recalls that when the authorities have completed a subscription to "Narodnaya Volya" conscript "Hulk" subscribers eager to defend their right to publish, also appealed to the tribunal. But there is not perceived to consider these complaints and tried hard not to register. If claims sent by mail, they were deported back, says Vladimir Kiselevich. His conclusion:
"I think society, people really realize that will not achieve any results. Because they did react. People have realized the political situation. So that was kind of control, independent tribunal or other universities to have people skills and a chance though, people would protect their rights, why not? "
As party favorites consider the problem of media-independent? How effective they seem new radio channel broadcasting from abroad, and for the discovery of which they were? Chairman PCB Sergei Kalyakin:
"-Independent information in Belarus is no longer present, so you can not read that more perfectly — newspapers, radio or" Belsat. "Unfortunately, now it is very, very inefficient. Because problem-independent information space remains topical, and she needs engage everyone who thinks about the future of democratic Belarus. Authorities did everything to miss this place. "
"The smallness of this dilemma resolves web, but limited, since maybe only 20 percent of people use the web. As for our party, we do not feel as if the newspaper" Comrade "- body only our party. This socio-political publication that illuminates life in Belarus with different looks. We are making your share, so finance newspaper in significant extent, to the same founded it. Newspaper for all can provide a platform, which she does. "
Commented Jeanne Litvin:
"The main political force in the country — is the head of the country and, of course, the party in power. Unfortunately, on this day consists recollection that the latter simply does not rise to renounce complete control over the information space. President and general Well not so long ago advocated that in the public interest of the media should be controlled by the state, because in the hands of the media — the most destructive weapon strength.
Prerequisites such position in relation to the press, first in the absence of a tradition of freedom of speech in Belarus. Unfortunately, the free press and the relationship with the opposition characterized favorites too prirekany time, dissatisfaction with the each other. Attitude to the dilemma of freedom of expression determines the degree of democratic policy views. And if, for example, from the mouth of the 1st of the favorites political camp sounds: media-independent, in principle, does not and can not be, it is vivid evidence of political short-sightedness, according to the level of political culture of this man.
Journalists should not serve traffic should not serve individual politicians. I believe that privatization and de-monopolization claim should become a priority in the system of political demand
s of our opposition. "
Version MIA: "Freedom of speech should be, it is 100%. But not vsedazvolenasts! "
According to estimates Bazhan, in the country there are only 30 non-state political media. While 13 of them out without the right to pursue membership. A 16 can not reach the right to distribute via kiosks "Sayuzdruk." Among other things, the noticeable impact on the economic state publications. But the most concrete progress in this respect the authorities — recovery through the courts huge monetary fines from the editions-independent media.
In most cases — Tipo for insulting officials. So, in 1999, Secretary of the Security Council Sheiman sought from the newspaper "News" and journalist Sergei Anisko 50 thousand dollars. Shejman promised to transfer funds for boarding and veterans. Fate funds could not be traced, although for 7 years with a pension of 30% was calculated S.Aniski. Also, he seized property.
In 2002, a noise lawsuit chairman of the Committee of State Control Anatolia A.Tozik to the newspaper "Our freedom." From the editors and journalist Misha Podolyaka collected 55 thousand dollars. Compensation Tozik going to build a list of clinic. During the deportation of debt forgiven Podolak, otherwise faced journalist was unreal.
The latest example of confrontation and bureaucrat-independent press — lawsuit Nicholas Charhinets the journalist Alexander Tamkovich and the newspaper "New time". Senator offended article in which specially created Tipo offended the Afghan period of his biography. And although in the end the amount of the initial payment has been repeatedly reduced equivalent was still a considerable amount: about 25 thousand dollars.
Nikolai CherginetsEven before the process sovereign Cherginets promised transfer funds to cure patients at the mental level in Belarus. Claims that did just that:
"Let Radio Freedom is not worried about the money. I never razmenvavsya and huge sums. Equity has long focused psychiatric clinic in novelty. And even received a reply signed by the head doctor Sklemy: monetary assistance amounting to 43 million 293 thousand rubles (less taxes), you have clinics, assist us to provide the three healing furniture department. Acquired beds and tables, made comfortable for patients. addition, Tomkovich translated million rubles to me by mail, had to apply to the tax: it counted and transferred there the remaining amount. So can sleep relaxed. "
Correspondent"You think it will contribute to freedom of speech? Or just become an example for other journalists to be more careful?"
Cherginets"Do you think there is an insult to freedom of speech? Is, of course, because the mat fences write off the excess of freedom. And if you have been offended? That I wrote to you about the various abominations, about your family, your kids, spouse sweetheart? Which they did. What does freedom of speech? This simple heresy. A heresy should be punished. Freedom of speech should be, it is 100%. vsedazvolenasts But not attempt to humiliate a man and hurt. "
Favorite in recent years in the number of lawsuits — "Narodnaya Volya". Against self-contained social and political publication fought deputies ideologues oligarchs: Oleg Proleskovsky,, owed, Egor Rybakov, Sergey Atroshchanka and even a group of workers "Belaruskali".
Most diverse business can be considered Egor Rybakov. In 2004, the tribunal ordered the editor, former TV presenter Eleanor Jeziorsko and journalist Marina Koktysh Rybakov pay about 45 thousand dollars. Rybakov very soon arrested and convicted. The newspaper did not rule out that the price of those assets Rybakov partly paid off for "privatized" municipal funds (over 200 million).
A year later, the House of Representatives , Owed sought to "Narodnaya Volya" the same amount for non-pecuniary damage from the publication, which claimed Haidukevich cooperation with the regime of Saddam Hussein. Bureaucrat promised that had spent "on kids and bloodless." But by that time read on the subject flatly refuses. Meanwhile, the other day the 2006 election presidential candidate Gaiduchevici filed with the CEC information on annual income which was in the midst of the rest and "moral damages" through the tribunal.
In 2005, the sports newspaper "Pressball" Hit the tribunal after an article in which stated that one of the Vice-Minister of Finance Nikolai Korbut is wanted by Interpol band for his role in a criminal organization. Someone Andrew Imanali really was deputy Korbut, but gymnastics federation, which also leads Korbut. The Tribunal sought 30 million rubles "Pressball" and 10 million from the editor Vladimir Berezhkova. The Minister said that the funds will be used in mentoring ministry farm, but later changed his mind and said he would buy drugs. Currently Korbut — in intensive care clinics Office of the President after a heart attack.
In the history of the Belarusian-independent journalism are many examples of punishment not only currency fines and even prison sentences. For insulting the head of state were punished by restriction of freedom Markevich, Paul Mazhejka Viktor Ivashkevich.
Alexander SdvizhkouIn the past year opened brand new page — prison. Went to jail deputy editor of the independent weekly "Consent" Alexander Sdvizhkou. The first time a journalist has been accused of inciting religious hatred. He believes the order to neutralize the media-independent comes from 1st ideological center. Punishment is selected depending on the context of the case:
"Two years back the Belarusian authorities need a reason to deal with the information-analytical weekly" consent. "And because they used the first opportunity that came to him — the publication of pictures that for some reason were later referred to as" the number of Muhammad. "With all this cartoon scandal was purely political, and that the stresses in the material, written in our newspaper. Draws religious emotions, I repeat — religious, specifically as an Orthodox believer, even fundamentalists — these figures do not affect …
In general I can say that I have my three months of his release regard as a creative assignment. And I think that we "quits" with the Belarusian government. My creative trip worth 3 months jail. Since I vyznat that never would feel at liberty. "
Commented Jeanne Litvin:
"The courts will soon endure a lot of positive decisions in favor of the officials. And so they are on the brink of bankruptcy those publications who have filed complaints against. Grieve amount of compensation required. Essentially, they go beyond the boundaries of reasonable — just not comparable with those moral suffering that Tipo Experiencing bureaucrats. Occasionally develops even the memory that the highest bureaucrats or reduce personal scores with the editors and journalists free, or so makarom try to do better their welfare. And we journalists hardly see how some began extras authorities and others, Aware of insecurity under the pressure of the authorities from time to time pass position, introduced self-censorship.
Naturally, you need to find a way out. And it is that we must constantly keep in mind: enabling people to control the actions of the authorities, reflected the greatest number of views, thoughts — these are the main features that in a democracy take on the media.
Specifically, it will allow journalists to claim the title of representatives of the fourth estate. "
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