“Caring” police prevented press photographer from working “for the sake of her own safety”

2013 2013-02-21T18:07:35+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en http://spring96.org/files/images/sources/brest-harytonava.jpg The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

Mrs. Milana Kharytonava, photographer at the “Brestskiy Kurier” newspaper, received a response to her complaint that related to obstacles she faced in the performance of her professional duties during a football game held on 25 November last year.

After the match the photographer began taking pictures of the police detaining the most active supporters of the home team. A policeman ordered the photojournalist to stop taking photos and pushed her to the pavement. Despite numerous attempts to prove that she was performing her professional duties, the police officer prevented her from take pictures, and stopped only after comments from a riot policemen.

Milana Kharytonava filed a complaint with the Prosecutor's Office, demanding to investigate the alleged facts, to find out the identity of the policeman and give legal assessment of his actions. Instead of the prosecuting authorities, a response came from Leninski District Police chief Henadz Vaitovich, who reports that no violations of the law were found during a check. Furthermore, the journalist’s claims of brutal and tactless behavior of the policeman were confirmed, while his request not to approach the place where football fans were being arrested were allegedly “aimed to ensure the safety” of Mrs. Kharytonava herself.

Milana Kharytonava is not satisfied with this response and is going to visit Leninski District Police Department to see the results of the official investigation and find out the name of the policeman who prevented her from performing her professional duties.