"Written directive was sent to the public prosecutor of the district to call back the demand. The public prosecutor of the district was pointed out by the public prosecutor´s office of the region the necessity to make decisions during the productive activity exact to the existing legislation", -- is said in the letter, addressed to the newspaper Editor-in-Chief, signed by the Deputy Public Prosecutor of the region A. Tachko on May, 17. 

"We are satisfied with the decision of the regional public prosecutor´s office. Hope, this will change obviously biased attitude of the public prosecutor Siargey Zamara to our edition", -- Aliaksey Bely informed the BAJ Monitoring Service. 

It should be reminded that the public prosecutor of Gantsavichy district demanded to send him "reference issues" of the non-governmental local newspaper "Gantsavitsky Chas", certified by the editorial seal. The editorial considered these demands illegal and sent a complaint to superior force.

Human rights advocates: there are steady trends in the country towards aggravation of the situation with the freedom of speech

24.05.2007

"The hallmark of the year 2006 is mass violations of the freedom of speech, systematic and purposeful persecution and limitation of the activity of mass media and journalists", -- reports the analytical review "Human rights violation in Belarus in 2006" prepared by a group of Belarusian human rights advocates.

According to the review presented on the 24th of May last year is notable for extremely hard conditions for work of non-state media: the authorities either closed or suspended the work of newspapers, instituted criminal legal proceedings for publications in mass media, impeded issuance and distribution of print mass media. Journalists of independent mass media were detained and arrested during the year 2006, they were prevented from obtaining information and were refused accreditation; foreign journalists were not allowed to enter the country.

There is no any progress in investigation of the case on disappearance of the cameraman Dzmitry Zavadski; the murderer of Varanika Charkasava, the journalist of the non-state newspaper "Salidarnasts", hasn´t been found yet; the cause of death of Vasil Hrodnikaw, the reporter to the newspaper "Narodnaya Volya", -- points out the analytical review.

The author of the review considers the ban on distribution of non-state regional and national Belarusian newspapers on subscription through the catalog of "Belposhta" and the net of newspaper stands of "Belasajuzdruk" to be the hardest blow to them.

"This year we have changed the strategy of carrying out a review. Working on this year´s review we not only prepared the chronicle of human rights violations in Belarus but also had the goal to analyze the events and taking into account the facts to trace the trend", -- said the co-author of the review human rights advocate Ales Byalaytski.

The analysis of the violations was prepared on the basis of private applications of citizens, facts detected by the human rights advocates and other sources of information namely the site of public organization "Belarusian Association of Journalists".

Other chapters and topics of the review include "Changes in the legislation regarding human rights", "Assertion of the right to truthful information on the missing people", "Persecution of political opponents and dissidents, imposing of the state ideology", "Pressure of special service on politically and socially active citizens" etc. The authors of the review also touched upon the violation of human rights to life, to the freedom of peaceful meetings, to freedom of associations, to freedom of religion and also highlighted the issue of discrimination of people on their language and nationality.

The analytical review has been published in Belarusian. The Russian and English translations will be published soon.

The head of the Brest television suggested the employees coming to an agreement.

25.05.2007

The court trials started by the head of the local television and radio company are in progress in Brest. This week the case was considered for two days. The representative of Larysa Dobradomava, the head of the state television and radio company "Brest", offered the respondents a peaceful settlement during the court session on the 23d of May.

The terms of the peaceful settlement state that the respondents should cover the court expenses (5 million rubles), publish a disclaimer in the local mass media and send repeat appeals to the places where complaints have been filed earlier. The above mentioned appeals should clearly state that the respondents recognize previous information on the state of things at the Brest state television as untrue. 

As one of the respondents, the former director Volha Shutava told the BAJ monitoring service, her colleagues and she rejected such an offer and decided to voice their complaints in the court.

The court session continued on the 24th of May, witnesses made statements and motions were brought by the defense party then. The attorneys suggested that papers on finance actions of the Brest television and radio company should be subjoined to the case.

On this account the judge made a break. The session will continue on the 5th of June.

At the end of last year the former employees of thee television and radio company sent complaints to various organizations (including President´s Administration, State Supervision Committee and Belarusian Television and Radio Company). They pointed out in their letters unfair system of financial incentives in the company, authoritarian methods of management by the head Larysa Dabradomava and her personal dishonesty.

Dabradomava believes that the content of the complaints humiliates her honor, dignity and professional reputation and brought the action to the court. She demanded initially 50 million rubles from her former employees for moral damage.

The "Novy Chas" Newspaper Resumed Publication 

25.05.2007

The non-governmental social and political newspaper "Novy Chas" is making party presentation on the occasion of resuming publication of the edition today on May, 25. It is being planned that at first the newspaper authors and leaders will say about own newspaper, then a famous Belarusian bard Viktar Shalkevich will sing for guests. 

The presentation will take place in metropolitan Palace of Art (Kazlova Str., 3) at 18 o´clock.

"Novy Chas" is being published in 2500 copies and distributed all over Belarus since March, 1,2007. 10 newspaper issues have already been published. 

"We are making the newspaper presentation a bit later than have resumed our publication quite consciously. At first we decided to ---- edit definite quantity of the "Novy Chas" copies in order to have something for the presentation", -- says the Editor-in-Chief Aliaksey Karolj.

National weekly "Novy Chas" became successor of the "Zgoda" newspaper, which was closed on March, 17, 2007, two days before the Presidential elections. According to A. Karolj, they understood it is impossible to resume "Zgoda" and took another "sleeping" edition. The editorial "Chas Navinau" was created, which became the "Novy Chas" newspaper editor.

"Against the background that newspapers are being closed and transfer into electronic versions, we set the goal to resume definitely as paper edition", -- emphasized Aliaksey Karolj. - Though the way for registration took a year".

"Novy chas" is being distributed by the same scheme like "Nasha Niva" and "Narodnaya Volya". Because it´s impossible to get to news stands, - notices the Editor-in-Chief. - it is possible to find it in the news stands of the Belarusian Popular Front Party and the Association of the Belarusian Language". 

It is possible to subscribe for "Novy Chas", having transferred money to the account: 3012211081110, filial of MGD public corporation "Belinvestbank", Minsk, Kalektarnaya Str., 11, code 764, UNT190790926.

Subscription for one month costs 2.500 rubles.

"Novy Chas" is totally Belarusian language newspaper. According to the editors, the edition has new conception, which apprehends "Zgoda" conception, but obtained its´ peculiar traits. The newspaper is aimed at reflection of social and economic problems.

KGB Awarded Workers of State Television

29.05.2007

Regional department of KGB favored journalists of state television and radio company "Mahilieu" for joint work with letters of commendation and valuable presents.

Celebration in honor was timed to the Day of television and radio workers. KGB department of Mahileu region favored work of regional television journalists Iryna Bardzilouskaya and Tatsiana Siargeichyk with a delay in two weeks, but in connection with this professional holiday. 

Therefore, television journalists with their several colleagues were invited to the office of KGB direction. In solemn atmosphere they were awarded with letters of commendation and valuable presents and wished further creative progress - including on the way of joint work of local television and national security direction

Both that state television channel workers were really mentioned last year as well as this year with television topics, which were memorized because of its singularity. It was in ex facte informational reportages about business contacts of regional public organizations with foreign guests.

In both cases film crews were accompanied by unknown persons in plain clothes and policemen in the uniform, which provided entrance to the premises, where meetings with foreigners took place, "on legal grounds" of checking documents of those present

One of such topics was used in the informational program of the First television channel (BT) "Week panorama".

The BAJ Press Service