Vitsebsk: independent journalist Uladzimir Zhyhulou summonsed to prosecutor's office
journalist received a summons on 3 September and phoned to the
prosecutor's office on the telephone, indicated there. However, he
wasn't explained the reasons why he was summonsed there, whereas in
the summons it is stated as: “For explanations on the issue of
violation of the legislation on mass media”. Uladzimir Zhyhulou
must come to the Prosecutor of the Department of supervision over the
implementation of laws and legality of legal acts P. Zaitsau.
The independent journalist believes that there can be two reasons for the interest of the prosecutor's office. The first one is his publications about the Vitsebsk medic Ihar Pastnou, sentenced to forced psychiatric treatment by the Vitsebsk District Court. The newspaper “Vitebskiy Kuryer” repeatedly published critical statements by Mr. Pastnou, where he spoke about the defects in the work of the medical institutions of Vitsebsk.
The journalist wanted to take an interview from the chief physician of the psychiatric hospital, Alena Martynava, so that she could either prove or disprove the facts why raised the criticism of Ihar Pastnou, who worked as a medic in the hospital. Martynava at first agreed, but subsequently evaded from the interview several times, referring to her busyness. Her deputy also refused to talk with Zhyhulou, saying that the newspaper “Vitebskiy Kuryer” was unregistered and the journalist didn't have accreditation. This may be the second reason for Zhyhulou's summons to the prosecutor's office.
In August 2012 another Vitsebsk journalist, Alena Stsiapanava, was summonsed to the prosecutory officer Pavel Zaitsau and was issued with an official warning.