Belsaiuzdruk cancels contracts with the Narodnaia volia
The trading republican unitary company Belsayuzdruk unilaterally cancelled a contract with the editorial office of the Narodnaia volia for the distribution of the publication from 1 October. On 28 September this information was confirmed to Belarusian Association of Journalists by the Belsayuzdruk director Mikhail Padhainy. The contract was canceled because the newspaper had repeatedly violated the press law, he said. The editorial office of the Narodnaia volia believes that Belsayuzdruk itself flagrantly violated the cancel by failing to send a prior notice.
According to Mr. Padhainy, the newspaper has two warnings issued against it by the Ministry of Information within a year (two – by terms of Art. 32 and one – by terms of Art. 5 of the Law "On the Press and Other Media"). The Belsayuzdruk head underscored that the company has the right to cancel the contract with a periodical if the latter has violated the Belarusian legislation (including the press legislation).
"However, the same contract says that Belsayuzdruk must in a month warn of its intention to cancel the contract with a periodical", noted the deputy senior editor of the Narodnaia volia Sviatlana Kalinkina in an interview with BAJ. "State-owned newspapers also get warnings, however, there has not been a single case of a distribution contract with them being cancelled..."
Andrei Bastuniets, deputy chair of Belarusian Association of Journalists, adds that Belsayuzdruk is a company subordinate to the Ministry of Information with its head appointed by the Minister of Information. "Thus, this can be viewed as a double punishment: first, the Ministry issues a warning to the paper, and then the company subordinate to the Ministry refuses to distribute the paper", said A.Bastuniets.
Press Service of Belarusian Association of Journalists.