KGB presses on independent press distributors in regions

2012 2012-03-19T15:09:57+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

An officer of Shklou department of the KGB visited a shop of Byalynichy-based businessman and democratic activist Mikalai Myatselitsa.

He was interested in independent small editions distributed via his shop, Viasna human rights centre reports.

The KGB officer tried to figure out who produces the information materials.

“A KGB officer visited me on March 14. I know him personally. He questioned me in Shklou in the mass disorders case,” Mikalai Myatselitsa says. “I have a small stand with independent press and bulletins in the shop. People come a and choose a newspaper their want to read. The number of newspaper has recently increased, because small editions “Fakel”, “Region” and “Mogilevsky Vybor” resumed their work in February. The KGB officer asked where I took the newspaper and why I delivered them. I replied all paper were printed in accordance with the law on media. I said if he wanted to know who brings the newspapers to me, he may think they appear in the shop as a miracle, because it's not his business. He took some copies of newspapers saying he wanted to read them and went away.”

Mikalai Myatselitsa did not give much attention to the visit:

“I do not violate any Belarusian laws, but I always feel the increased attention from the law-enforcement bodies. The next day, a road policeman fined my wife, Anzhela Myatselitsa, for an alleged parking violation. It begins to worry me.”

According to Anzhela Myatselitsa, road police captain Alyaksei Karnilenka fined her 35,000 rubles.

“I stopped the car near the entrance to the consumer services centre to unload goods,” Anzela says. “All entrepreneurs working there do the same, but no one has been fined before. Aa police officer issued me a fine. There were some cars nearby, but he did not pay attention to them. I asked why he decided to fine only me and said nothing to other drivers, but he did not reply. It's not the money that worry me in this case, I am just interested in the selective attitude.”

In January 2011, KFB searched Mikalai Myatselitsa's flat in connection with the case over mass disorders in Minsk on December 19, 2010. Office equipment and information carriers were seized. Later, Mikalai was summoned to the Shklou department of the KGB for questioning. In summer 2011, he was fined by police and the Ministry of Emergency for participating in Ivan Kupala Day celebration on the river Druts in the Byalynichy district. Mikalai has organized Kupala fests for several years.

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