Mikhail Pastukhou: “Further tightening the screws on journalists expected”

2009 2009-01-22T17:28:22+0200 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

Due to the fact that the law “On mass media” is coming into force on February 8, all mass media are to be re-registered within a year.

At the report published at the webpage of the Information Ministry it is noted that according to the law, when performing professional duties, a journalist must offer service certificate at request. Its standard form is specified by the Ministry’s enactment No. 12 of October 6, 2008 and published at the webpage of the Information Ministry. The text f the law and regulatory legal acts on its implementing are also placed there.

As we have informed, Law “On Mass Media’ was signed by A. Lukashenka on July 17, 2008. Among its novelties are the right of the president to address the nation on important issues of social and public life without preliminary agreement if the state TV and radio media. The law bans professional activities of foreign mass media journalists at the territory of Belarus without accreditation. Mass media are to be accountable for “dissemination of untrustworthy information which can damage state or public interests”. The new law does not contain the paragraph according to which the organisation by which a journalist is accredited, is responsible for informing the upcoming events, supply documents.

The law has caused wide public response. “Due to the fact that the new law “On mass media” and the law on information, informatization and defence of information we would face further tightening the screws. It would touch printed and electronic mass media. The situation is to be the hardest for the journalists who contribute to foreign mass media,” the head of the legal defence of the Belarusian Association of Journalists Mikhail Pastukhou said in an interview to BelaPAN.