Harsh new crackdown on journalists in Belarus

first_img Russian media boss drops the pretence and defends Belarus crackdown News RSF_en BelarusEurope – Central Asia Condemning abuses EnvironmentFreedom of expressionExiled mediaJudicial harassment June 2, 2021 Find out more With the arrival of spring, protests against the disputed re-election of President Alexander Lukashenko in August 2020 have resumed. The crackdown has intensified as the security forces are clearly attempting to prevent media coverage of demonstrations.  BelarusEurope – Central Asia Condemning abuses EnvironmentFreedom of expressionExiled mediaJudicial harassment News News Nicholas Connolly, correspondent of the German broadcaster Deutsche Welle, was arrested twice in the space of a few days as he filmed a protest in Minsk on 27 March. He was wearing a press vest at the time and showed his official accreditation and his passport. He was taken to the police station and was released five hours later after intervention by the German embassy.  The authorities forced him to unlock his phone, threatening to place him in detention and confiscate his equipment.  Organisation News Follow the news on Belaruscenter_img May 28, 2021 Find out more April 2, 2021 Harsh new crackdown on journalists in Belarus At least six other journalists were arrested in the Belarusian capital on the same day before they even reached the location of the rally in Bangalore Square. Among them were Hanna Kaltyhina and Halina Ulasik, reporters for the news site Tut.by, who were arrested as they were eating in a local café. Yahor Martsinovich, editor-in-chief of the independent weekly newspaper Nasha Niva, and photographer Nadzeja Buzhan were arrested in their car.  Two days earlier on Freedom Day, the unofficial holiday commemorating the declaration of independence by Belarus, at least four other journalists were arrested and released after a few hours. They included two accredited Russian correspondents, Kirill Krivosheev, of the financial daily Kommersant and photographer Pavel Volkov of the daily Izvestia. Both were questioned as they covered rallies in the main street of Minsk. In Brest, freelance journalists Milana Kharytonava and Ales Liauchuk were picked up by the police outside the building where they live. “The authorities are trying to suppress all independent voices and to strike fear into the hearts of journalists,” said Jeanne Cavelier, the head of RSF’s Eastern Europe and Central Asia desk. “RSF hails the courage of those who continue to report on the crackdown in Belarus and calls on international organisations to take action to prevent such harassment and to secure the release of journalists jailed for doing their job.” The anti-government protests in Belarus may have lost steam this winter but there has been no let-up in the crackdown against journalists. Many reporters – including those indicted during protests after the election in 2020 – have been targeted in a series of raids and some have been prosecuted. Dzianis Ivashyn, known for his stories on the Belarusian police, was accused of “interfering in the activities of a police officer” and could face three years’ imprisonment. He is held in pre-trial detention at an administrative detention centre. Andrzej Poczobut, a journalist with the Polish state television network TVP Polonia, had his home in Hrodna searched on 25 March and was placed in pre-trial detention pending a criminal case for “incitement to hatred” and a possible five-year sentence. A total of eight journalists are behind bars awaiting trial and three have already been sentenced, on 18 February and 2 March.At the same time, the authorities are preparing amendments to the media law. According to a document obtained by Tut.by, news sites that report on subjects considered “extremist” could be blocked and news organisations could be stripped of their media status without recourse to the courts. Journalists found to have broken the law, for example by defamation or discrediting public institutions, could lose their accreditation. The draft also provides for a ban on the publication of information considered false or harmful to government interests, or opinion polls without prior authorization, on pain of prosecution. Ruled by Alexander Lukashenko since 1994, Belarus is ranked 153rd out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2020 World Press Freedom Index. to go further As new protest demonstrations sweep Belarus, preventive detention and lawsuits against journalists have escalated. Reporters Without Borders (RSF) calls on international organisations to take action. Credit: STRINGER / AFP RSF at the Belarusian border: “The terrorist is the one who jails journalists and intimidates the public” Receive email alerts “We welcome opening of criminal investigation in Lithuania in response to our complaint against Lukashenko” RSF says Help by sharing this information May 27, 2021 Find out morelast_img read more

Santos to deliver Kennedy School graduation address

first_img At Law School, Colombian president shares lessons on the line between peace and justice Juan Manuel Santos, the former president of the Republic of Colombia and Nobel laureate, will deliver the graduation address to the Harvard Kennedy School Class of 2019, Dean Douglas Elmendorf announced today.Santos served as president of the Republic of Colombia from 2010 to 2018. While president, he reached agreement with FARC, a guerilla army, to end more than 50 years of fighting. The accord has seen some 10,000 fighters disarm and begin to enter civilian life. Santos received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2016 for his efforts to end Colombia’s long civil war. In addition, unemployment, poverty, income inequality, and the murder rate all declined during Santos’ term as president. His government is also credited with tripling the road network and designating large areas of land as environmentally protected.“President Santos is a distinguished public servant who has made an important positive difference in the lives of millions of Colombians,” said Elmendorf. “We are honored to welcome him back to the Kennedy School, from which he received a Mid-Career Master in Public Administration degree in 1981.”Santos was a cadet at the Naval Academy of Cartagena before coming the United States to study at the University of Kansas, where he earned a B.A. in economics and business. He is also a graduate of the London School of Economics, where he studied economics, economic development, and public administration. He earned a master’s degree from Harvard Kennedy School before returning to Colombia to work as an editor at El Tiempo, one of the largest daily newspapers in Colombia. His reporting earned him a number of accolades, including the King of Spain prize for journalism.Santos was a Nieman Fellow at Harvard in 1988 and is the author of several books, including “The Third Way,” which he co-authored with former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, and “Check on Terror (Jaque al Terror)”, an account of the actions taken against the FARC guerrillas during his tenure as minister of national defense in Colombia. Santos also served as Colombia’s foreign trade minister and finance minister.Santos is currently the Angelopoulos Global Public Leaders Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School, where he is sharing the lessons he learned as president and working on issues related to peace and reconciliation, poverty, human rights, and the environment.The graduation address will be delivered at 2 p.m. on May 29 at Harvard Kennedy School. It will be live-streamed on the School’s website. Juan Manuel Santos, Kennedy School alumnus and Nieman fellow, wins Nobel Peace Prize Related A prophet of peace Colombian president honored for his efforts to end 50-year-long civil war Santos receives 2017 Great Negotiator Award Juan Manuel Santos, who won the Nobel for stabilizing Colombia, is back at Harvard to share what he learned Read Full Storylast_img read more