Today, international media and press freedom organisations issued " For
Free and Fair Media in Belarus",
a report calling for far reaching reforms
of the media in Belarus.
the current environment neither Belarus
journalists nor media outlets can properly operate to investigate and report
freely on events in Belarus,"
said IFJ European Co-Director Marc Gruber, who led a fact-finding mission to Belarus between
20 and 24 September. "A thin veneer of limited and symbolic reforms in recent months cannot conceal the fact that Belarus
continues to operate a highly repressive media environment."
delegation from the mission is presenting today the report to the Swedish EU
Presidency in Stockholm. The report provides an overview of the
current media situation and is the result of a joint fact-finding mission to Belarus in September 2009 where delegates
representing international media support and freedom of expression
organisations met with media and the Belarus authorities to discuss
press freedom and the media situation.
report calls for a set of reforms dealing in particular with economic
conditions for non-state media, access to information, accreditation of media
and journalists as well as broadcasting licensing
mission group prepared the report to ensure that media freedom and journalists'
rights remain top of the agenda at the ongoing EU-Belarus Human Rights Dialogue.
The EU will soon decide on whether to permanently end sanctions which were
initially imposed on Belarus
due to its poor human rights track-record.
report includes recommendations for media reform and expresses the readiness to
co-operate with the authorities and media professionals on the execution of
The organisations that contributed to the
Article 19, Civil Rights Defenders, Danish Union of Journalists, Index on Censorship, International/European
Federation of Journalists, International
Publishers' Association, International Pen, International Press Institute, Open
Society Institute, PressNow, Reporters Sans Frontieres, World Association
of Newspapers and News Publishers, and International Media Support (IMS).
Full copy of the report: http://www.ifj.org/en/articles/for-free-and-fair-media-in-belarus