Homel: journalist detained for covering mass action of protest

2009 2009-07-08T17:24:34+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en http://spring96.org/files/images/sources/zabaronena.jpg

On 8 July in the morning in Homel people in mufti detained a member of the Belarusian Association of Journalists, independent journalist Aleh Razhkou.

As said to the BAJ by his colleague Tatsiana Bublikava, they were covering a street action of entrepreneurs in the center of Homel. Aleh Razhkou was making a video. During the breaks he hid the camera in his bag.

Suddenly he was approached by two people in mufti, who very quickly showed him some documents and ordered him to show what was in his bag. When they saw the camera they saw that it was wanted and ordered him to go with them to Homel oblast police department.

Tatsiana Bublikava accompanied the detainee on the way to the police station. She does not rule out that as a result the video camera will be confiscated from Mr. Razhkou. The police paid no attention to his journalist certificate.

Aleh Razhkou also phoned her and said that he was being interrogated and the policemen were drawing a report of administrative violation (participation in unauthorized mass action).

The deputy head of the Belarusian Association of Journalists Andrei Bastunets states that by their actions the police violated the journalists’ rights to professional activities, guaranteed by Article 34 or the law On mass media.