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REGIONS:

Newspapers threatened



(IFJ/IFEX) - The IFJ is concerned at recent attacks on the independent
media in Belarus. According to the IFJ's information, the State
Committee for Press of Belarus has issued warnings to six independent
newspapers, "Belorusskaya Delovaya Gazeta", "Nasha Niva", "Naviny",
"Narodnaya Volya", "Pahonya" and "Svobodnye Novosti" for allegedly
"calling for the seizure of power."





**For background to recent harassment of Belarus media, see IFEX alerts
of 24 December, 4 November and 5 August 1998**

The allegations arise out of publications relating to presidential
elections. The IFJ fully supports its member organisation the Belarusian
Association of Journalists in its campaign for journalists' rights to
exercise their profession free from harassment of any kind.

Recommended Action


Send appeals to the President:
  • suggesting these warnings are attacks on press freedom in Belarus,
    which follow various other attempts to silence the independent media,
    including refusal of advertising, threats of closure, and legal actions
  • supporting the Belarusian Association of Journalists in its campaign
    for journalists' rights to exercise their profession free from
    harassment




    Appeals To



    Alexander Lukashenko
    President
    Minsk, Belarus
    Fax: +375 172 23 58 25 / 26 06 10







    Please copy appeals to the source if possible.



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