Delinquents Are Entrusted to Check the Violation
On 28 September Ihar Hodzka and Volha Maryiasina, workers of the editorial board of the non-state newspaper, were summonsed to Babruisk City Police Department for giving testimony on the fact of detention of more than 10 journalists by the police on 31 August. That day the deputy of Babruisk City Deputy Soviet Aliaksandr Chyhir held a protest action. He chained himself to a lamp-post in the central square of the city in order to protest against his dismissal from work which he believes was politically motivated. Ihar Hodzka and Volha Maryiasina were detained there together with other journalists for three hours. The policemen held an individual ‘prophylactic talk’ with each of them.
That’s why on 12 September the Belarusian Association of Journalists applied to the prosecutor of Leninski borough of Babruisk Viktar Haurykau demanding that the policemen who violated the journalists’ rights and the Belarusian legislation on mass media be punished. ‘The journalists had journalist certificates and other personal documents, didn’t take part ion the action and implemented their professional duties. Nevertheless, they were detained for ‘identification’. The policemen used physical force towards some of them… The photos that were made by photo correspondents were erased’, reads the application.
The investigation has started. Surprisingly enough it is run by the department of public order and prophylaxis of department of internal affairs of Babruisk City Executive Committee, the workers of which conducted the detention. Volha Maryiasina said to the BAJ press-service that she was summonsed to an interrogation. The investigator asked her many questions that had no relation to the case, starting from the topics of her articles and ending with the date of issue of her journalist certificate. Ihar Hodzka is on the leave of absence and therefore couldn’t come to the police.