Authorities extend detention of sports journalist Aliaksandr Ivulin

05.10.2021 Source: By BelaPAN

Aliaksandr Ivulin, a journalist with the now-blacklisted sports news website and soccer player, has had his pretrial detention extended again, the unregistered Viasna Human Rights Center reported on Monday.

In was not immediately known for how long the detention was extended.

Mr. Ivulin, who plays for FC Krumkačy Minsk in Belarus’ second division and has a popular YouTube channel focusing on soccer, has already been in custody for four months.

He was arrested in his Minsk home on June 3 and sentenced to 30 days in jail the following day on a charge of staging an unauthorized demonstration over a white-red-white-flag in a window of his apartment.

He was not released on completion of his jail sentence, as he was charged under Part One the Criminal Code’s Article 342, which penalizes “organizing or taking an active part in group actions grossly disturbing public order.”

In addition, Maksim Bierazinski, head of the site who is currently staying abroad, had his Minsk apartment searched on September 1.

As a result of the search, a computer’s hard drive, some memory sticks, white and red wristbands, a magnet bearing the image of Pahonia, Belarus’ historically national coat of arms, and a baseball bat featuring the logo were seized.

Andrej Masloŭski, a journalist who had worked for for more than a decade before quitting the job in July 2021, was sentenced to 15 days in jail on September 8 for allegedly distributing extremist content, an offense penalized by the Civil Offenses Code’s Article 19.11.

Mr. Masloŭski was arrested on September 6, after officers of the interior ministry’s organized crime and corruption department, which has played a central role in the government’s crackdown on political opponents, searched his apartment.

The journalist was subsequently placed in the detention center on Akrescina Street in Minsk.

A pro-government Telegram channel later published a video of an ostensibly repentant Mr. Masloŭski speaking about the sports news website’s allegedly pro-opposition editorial policy following the disputed August 2020 presidential election and regretting his participation in post-election protests.

«Дабро заўсёды вяртаецца». Палітвязень Аляксандр Івулін атрымаў паштоўку, якую сам напісаў шэсць гадоў таму