State monopolist ‘Belsayuzdruk’ refuses to distribute ‘Nasha Niva’

2008 2008-10-08T17:43:11+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

The state-run press-distribution monopoly Belsayuzdruk once again refused to distribute the independent newspaper Nasha Niva via its trade network.

The denial letter as an answer to the proposal for cooperation has been received by the Nasha Niva editorial office on 6 October.

‘In the near future the republican unitary enterprise does not plan to distribute the Nasha Niva newspaper via its distribution network of kiosks and shops’, is stated laconically in the letter signed by the deputy director of the enterprise TatsIana Ivinskaya.

As noted by the editor-in-chief of the Nasha Niva Andrei Skurko in the conversation with the Belarusian Association of Journalists’ press-service, it is not the first denial to the independent newspaper for proposals to renew cooperation since the beginning of the year 2006. However, the editorial office plans to address the proposals for cooperation in the future, to show in this way that they are not going to tolerate the economic and political discrimination of the independent press.

‘Today, when the Belarusian authorities are trying to demonstrate to the West their trend for democratization, it could be a normal and positive move to return independent newspapers, including the Nasha Niva, to the state-run system of distribution. However the denials received by us from Belsayuzdruk and Belposhta show that this democratization unfortunately remains declarative as before,” Andrei Skurko said.

As we have informed, the distribution of the Nasha Niva, as well as a number of independent publications was stopped by Belsayuzdruk in the beginning of 2006, before the presidential elections. At the same time Belposhta, the Belarusian state postal service and the state monopoly subscription service also said it would cease distributing the paper and refused to allow people to subscribe to this and other independent newspapers. Since that time all attempts of independent newspapers to return to the state system of distribution were fruitless.

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