The deputy chairman of the Belarusian Association of Journalists will be interrogated at the Central Office of the Investigative Committee as a witness in a criminal case on March 24.
A monthly chronology of repression and resistance in Belarus, based on the work of IFEX members and other international and domestic actors.
On the morning of March 17 Hrodna police arrested journalist Yan Roman, near his home. The police "examined" his apartment and seized his phone and laptop. In the afternoon the police came with "inspection" to the home of journalist Ales Dzianisau.
Dzianis Ivashyn is the 11th journalist under arrest in Belarus. He was arrested on the evening of Friday 12 March in Grodno, in the west of the country. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) joins its Belarusian affiliate, the Belarusian Association of Journalists (BAJ), in calling for his immediate release and that of the other ten journalists detained in Belarus.
Detained on Friday, March 12, journalist Dzianis Ivashyn was charged today under Article 365 of the Criminal Code ( "Interference with the activities of a law-enforcement officer").
Journalist Dzianis Ivashyn was detained in his apartment at about 6 p.m. Before that, a blue minivan parked near the apartment block. The search of journalist Dzianis Ivashin ended late at night, Dzianis was placed in the KGB detention center. Now there are 10 journalists behind bars in Belarus.
Nasha Niva’s photographer Nadezhda Buzhan became one of the finalists of the 2021 World Press Photo international photo contest. Her photo shows Olga Severinets waiting for her husband, politician Pavel Severinets, outside a notorious detention centre on Okrestin Street.
As of March 11, Ihar Bancer [Igor Bantser] has been on a dry hunger strike for eight days. Ihar announced the hunger strike at a court session on March 3 expressing his protest and disagreement with the accusations of Hooliganism that he is facing and that he calls unfair. Ihar has been in prison since October 20, 2020. The musician's relatives and friends believe that one of his unrelated street performances could have been the likely reason for his arrest.
The President of the Belarusian Association of Journalists Andrei Bastunets and his Vice-presidents Aleh Aheyeu and Barys Haretski described how they were searched and what the organization is doing now. Early in the morning of 16 February, security forces raided the homes of heads of the Belarusian Association of Journalists (BAJ)- a registered non-governmental public organization that protects the rights of the journalists. The association’s office was also searched. Later it is revealed that other raids were conducted against human rights defenders, journalists and activists almost throughout the country. The Investigation Committee reported that the procedure was initiated “to establish the circumstances of funding for the protest activities”. Today BAJ works under extremely difficult conditions: the office was sealed, the bank account was arrested, equipment, financial documents and a seal were seized. The material was prepared within the framework of the Press Club Belarus project "Press under the press", which contains evidence of repressions against independent media and journalists in Belarus.
Belarus’ human rights situation has deteriorated further in recent weeks. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) believes this deterioration should be viewed in the context of the grave and systemic human rights violations the authorities committed in the run-up to the 2020 fraudulent presidential election and in its aftermath, for which there has been no accountability. The EFJ joins Amnesty International, the International Federation for Human Rights and Article19 in demanding action by the UN Human Rights Council to establish a new mechanism assisting the process of accountability for human rights violations in Belarus.