Pukhavichy authorities create obstacles to ‘Maryinahorskaya Hazeta’
KGB presses on entrepreneurs cooperating with independent mass media. A private entrepreneur from Maryina Horka (the Pukhavichy district) has to cancel the rental contract with Maryinahorskaya Hazeta under pressure of the local authorities. On 2 October the newspaper submitted the document for registration to the Ministry of Information.
The BAJ press service learnt this from Volha Kulchanka, the founder and director of the private printing company Telegraph-Info. This legal entity acts as the editorial staff of the newspaper.
On 14 October the lessor said that the Pukhavichy executive committee made him cancel the leasing contract on the ground of ‘financial insolvency’ of the lessee. The final payment date was 10 October, but there was an oral arrangement with the lessor to extend the term for several days. However, he had to yield to the pressure of officials. Having undergone a number of inspections by the sanitation station and the fire emergency service he was called for a conversation with the ideological department of the district executive committee and also received phone calls from the KGB.
In the documents for registration the newspaper is described as a public and political edition. Maryinahorskaya Hazeta had the circulation of 299 copies this year. It was printed on 16 A3 pages. According to Volha Kulchanka, the newspaper has raised acute issues several times.
The email box of Maryinahorskaya Hazeta was broken in summer. Having found out who was the editor, the secret services began showing a keen interest in the newspaper activities. Editor-in-chief Stsiapan Kulchanka has been summoned to the KGB several times.
The newspaper, whose documents have been considered by the Ministry of Information for several weeks already, was deprived of the legal address. Under the law, the documents for registration must be considered within a month, so the editorial staff is looking for a new legal address. ‘It doesn’t matter where one has the legal address. The main thing is to continue the process of the newspaper registration,’ Volha Kulchanka said.