Authorities Try to Hide Truth about Belarusian Economy
According to RFE/RL
On errand of the head of the government Siarhei Sidorski the deputy prime-minister Andrei Kabiakou sent to organs of state government letter #11/810-234-DSP (restricted) of 22 February 2007. In this letter Mr. Kabiakou asks to provide control of public appearances of state officials in mass media (including non-state ones). In the case of non-objective elucidation of the economic processes the officials will receive disciplinary punishments up to discharge.
The second paragraph of the letter demands to establish a regular monitoring of the economical publications. In the case some non-objective information is found the officials are to report to the Ministry of Information and provide correct information, including publication of official statements and refutations.
A lawyer Valiantsin Stefanovich commented on this letter: ‘This document can be viewed as another manifestation of censorship in the country. The society has the right to receive complete and objective information, including information about the economic situation in the country. This document is aimed at non-admission of critical remarks concerning the Belarusian economy. It means that journalists can be deprived of the possibility to receive objective and critical information. The society is again proposed exclusively positive information about the development of our economy. They want to hide the truth again.’