Siarhei Budkin, Pavel Kashyryn and Valiantsin Stefanovich Visited Culture Department to Ask for Authorization of Krama Concert

2007 2007-03-15T10:00:00+0200 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

On 12 March the coordinator of the Hit Dozen (Tuzin Hitou) project Siarhei Budkin, organizer of concerts Pavel Kashyryn and a lawyer Valiantsin Stefanovich visited the culture department of Minsk city executive committee to ask the officials authorize a concert of a well-known Belarusian rock band Krama.

In his interview Euroradio Valiantsin Stefanovich said the following:

‘They told us to go to the ideology department of the presidential administration, who could decide such questions. However, there is a legal order for organization of mass events that has been adopted by the Soviet of Ministers, and the ideology department is not mentioned there.

We were also told that all musicians must repent, then everything will be forgiven to them and concerts will be authorized. It’s not quite clear what they should repent in, most probably – in their public position. Then they said the concert would be authorized if we promised absence of any symbols and anything related to the politics at the concert.

I think it would be better to send a written application on behalf of the organizer, with the request to give an answer, including the motivation in the case of refusal. I should mention that the ruling of the Soviet of Ministers doesn’t prohibit any expression of political views. There are several cases in which an event can’t be permitted. It can happen in the case the event coincides with another one held in the same room or in the case of ‘some other obstacles’, which is not quite clear. Besides, in the ruling it is stated that all these procedures have been established for control of the artistic level of the concerts and prevention of propaganda of violence, pornography and other illegal and antisocial things.

Of course, Krama was not going to make something of the kind at its concert. Now the organizers intend to file a written application and wait for an answer. However, there is still little hope that the concert will be held.