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OSCE Representative on Freedom of Media Denied Entrance to Belarus

2004 2004-09-13T10:00:00+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

Belarusian Association of Journalists
These days the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media Miklos Haraszti was planning to make an assessment visit to Belarus regarding the media situation. However, Belarusian authorities denied Mr. Haraszti a visa, - reports Belarusian Association of Journalists.
In July the OSCE media expert informed both Belarusian foreign minister and OSCE official representative in Belarus Viktar Haysionak of his plans to visit Belarus. Throughout July and August Mr. Haraszti was successfully discussing the details of the visit with the officials in charge. He agreed to change the dates and the term of his trip, as well as the program of the seminar, as Belarusian authorities required. After all, the very seminar was cancelled.
Not giving up his plans, Mr. Haraszti kept waiting for the official response from Belarusian officials. No answer followed...
“Interpreting diplomatic language, the lack of answer means a refusal. The fact that the whole year OSCE representatives on media freedom are not being able to enter Belarus can signify that our freedom of speech situation is really a crisis one,” - states BAJ chairman Zhana Litvina. “The climate of insularity, which Belarusian authorities are creating close to the elections and referendum, damages Belarusian image a lot. At the same time, systematic denials of the permit to enter our country seem simply indecent.”

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