Vitsebsk: state-owned newspaper ’Vitsbichy’ writes only about one candidate
The article Many People near Picket (published in the issue of Vitsbichy for 7 October 2010), published in the city newspaper describes the successful work of collectors of signatures for nomination of Aliaksandr Lukashenka for the presidential election. The author tells the readers the precise location of the electoral picket – ‘at the crossing of Lenin Street and Frunze Avenue, near the book office’, and even offers a description – ‘a sign with the inscription ‘Collection of signatures for the nomination of Lukashenka Aliaksandr Ryhoravich a candidate for President of the Republic of Belarus’ and a desk with the Constitution and the Electoral Code on it’.
The article states that the collection of signatures is conducted quite actively: ‘There were many people near the picket in the afternoon on 6 October. The collectors of signatures put in the signatures lists the names of those who expressed the wish to support the candidacy of Aliaksandr Lukashenka at the upcoming election.
However, the journalist Viktar Siankou – an attentive observer and the author of the detailed description of Lukashenka’s electoral picket, didn’t consider it as necessary to mention that the electoral campaign is not confined to support of Mr. Lukashenka. What concerns all other candidates, the author of the article just wrote that ‘the activities of citizens near the pickets of the electoral teams of other candidates was clearly low’ and didn’t even mention the names of these candidates, most probably not to promote the ‘ideological adversaries’. Meanwhile, the electoral pickets of Andrei Sannikau and Vital Rymasheuski side with the picket that was so thoroughly depicted by him, and passers-by can see it with their own eyes which pickets attract more signers.
Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections