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Politics and News from Belarus - Charter'97


Businessman sentenced to 15 days of detention
17:44, 01/12/2004, photo by


French TV Crew Failed to Cross Belarusian Border
17:20, 01/12/2004, "Brestskiy Kurjer"

Last week at the border crossing “Warsaw Bridge” “the TV crew of French TV channel ARTE encountered unexpected obstacles for entering Brest. On Thursday at about midday foreign TV crew wanted to cross the Polish-Belarusian border, but without clearly explained reasons they were not let in by the Belarusian side. Probably, it was a repercussion of the story with the filming crew of French TV channel TF1, detained on November 10 in Minsk by people in mufti and then deprived accreditation by the Belarusian FM.

UCP Leader Got Two Writs to Prosecutor’s Office Interrogation
16:48, 01/12/2004

Leader of the United Civil Party (UCP) Anatol Lyabedzka has received two writs for the interrogation to the Prosecutor’s Office. In the interview to the BelaPAN the politician told that on December 2 he was to come to the Prosecutor’s office of the Central district of Minsk to testify in the case of his article publication in the Polish “Gazeta Wyborcza”.

Valery Levaneuski Met His Family
16:36, 01/12/2004

On November 30, leader of the National Strike Committee of Entrepreneurs, participant of the European coalition “Free Belarus” Valery Levaneuski met with all his family. On September 7, 2004 court of the Lenin district of Hrodna found Valery Levaneuski and Alyaksandr Vasilyew guilty of public slander of Belarusian President connected with a grave crime (Article 368 Part 2 of the Criminal Code), and sentenced them to two years of imprisonment of the minimum-security colony. It was written in the verdict that the sentence “Come and say that you are against somebody’s skiing in Austria at your expense”, printed in leaflets, contains insult of honor and dignity of the president of the Republic of Belarus.

Q&A: Next steps in Ukraine crisis
15:26, 01/12/2004, CNN

Ukraine`s parliament has voted to ask President Leonid Kuchma to dismiss the government of Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych to help end a political crisis triggered by a contested presidential election. The move sets in motion a process in which Kuchma must first back the vote of no-confidence by lawmakers and then call for new a election. We asked CNN`s Moscow Bureau Chief Jill Dougherty, who is in the Ukraine capital of Kiev, to explain the situation.

The crisis: Roots, repercussions
15:25, 01/12/2004, By Bill Nichols, USA TODAY

Ukraine`s political crisis has virtually paralyzed the country, brought hundreds of thousands of protesters into the streets and threatened to erupt into civil war. Some key questions and answers about what Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Richard Lugar, R-Ind., called "the greatest story in the world right now" on Fox News Sunday.

Ukraine parliament votes to dismiss pro-Russian government
15:23, 01/12/2004, AFP

Ukraine`s parliament voted to dismiss the government of pro-Russian Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovich, who is locked in a bitter battle with opposition leader Viktor Yushchenko over the presidency.

Aliaksandr Atroshchankau: "Dictatorial regimes are afraid of solidarity"
14:44, 01/12/2004

Some days ago activist of “Zubr” movement Aliaksandr Atroshchankau came back from Kiev where he had been taking part in protest actions. Members of Serbian youth organization “OTPOR” and Georgian “Kmara” also came to support Ukrainians in their fight for freedom. Together with Ukrainian movement “Pora” they represented international youth that fight for better future for their countries. On their way back to Minsk Aliaksandr Atroshchankau arrested in train together with coordinator of Zubr movement Uladzimer Kobets, coordinator of civil initiative Charter’97 Dmitry Bondarenko and one of leaders of European coalition Dmitry Borodko were arrested by Ukrainian enforcers. They spent 18 hours in prison and were released only after trial. Aliaksandr Atroshchankau tells about it:

Lukashenka Fears Ukrainian Variant
14:22, 01/12/2004

Alyaksandr Lukashenka sets a mission before his administration to strengthen the system of power in connection with the events in Ukraine, told on Wednesday the newly appointed head of presidential administration Viktar Shejman. “Situation in the foreign policy, and first of all events in Ukraine show that modern political technologies and low controllability inside the country are fraught with serious consequences,” told Viktar Shejman.

State Refuses to Print and Sell “Myastsovy Chas” Newspaper
13:49, 01/12/2004

Pinsk regional printing-house again has refused to cooperate with the independent newspaper “Myastsovy Chas”. For more than a year Pinsk printing-house was obliged to be published in the town of Baranavichy, which inferred additional costs for the editorial office, and meant less flexibility, the BAJ press service informs.

Verkhovna Rada Makes Yanukovych’s Government Resign
13:08, 01/12/2004,

On Wednesday, December 1, the Verkhovna Rada (parliament) has passed a decision on stabilization of the situation in Ukraine, stipulating for resignation of Yanukovych’s government. 229 MPs voted for this paragraph of the resolution, and 228 MPs supported the resolution in general. (To pass the decision 226 votes are necessary). The deputies also have passed a decision to form a “government of people’s trust” After the voting the Rada closed its session.

New prosecutor general will take no steps to probe high-profile disappearances
13:07, 01/12/2004

A prominent human rights activist expressed certainty that Monday’s appointment of a new prosecutor general would not contribute to any progress in the stalled investigation into the 1999-2000 disappearances of Aleksandr Lukashenko’s opponents. “No green light will be given for the inquiry,” said Garri Pogonyailo, deputy chairman of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee.

Lukashenka Complains About Russian Media to Latvian Ambassador
12:24, 01/12/2004

On November 29 Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of Latvia in Belarus Majra Mora presented credentials to Alyaksandr Lukashenka. As the correspondent of news agency Regnum was told by the Latvian FM, the protocol speech of Majra Mora was in Belarusian. She underlined that she saw Belarus as a beautiful country with wonderful people, brilliant, talented and diligent. The Ambassador also noted what remarkable changes have taken place in Latvian connection with its joining the EU and NATO, both in the sense of security and economy. According to the diplomat, it affected positively the economic cooperation with Belarus as well.

Perspektiva business association decides to join campaign for promoting European values in Belarus
11:26, 01/12/2004

The Perspektiva business association has decided to join the European Coalition founded by the Belarusian Social Democratic Party “Narodnaya Hramada.” The decision was made by the Perspektiva Coordinating Council on November 29, Anatoly Shumchenko, chairman of the association, told BelaPAN.

Ukraine`s Intramural Contest: Entrenched Interests Scramble
11:23, 01/12/2004, By C. J. Chivers, The New York Times

The battle for the presidency of Ukraine has been framed as a contest between a prime minister who represents a corrupt government with a deep affinity for Russia and a reform-minded challenger who wishes to move Ukraine toward the European fold.

The larger struggle over Ukraine
11:17, 01/12/2004, The Washington Times

The tug of war between Russia and the West over the electoral crisis in Ukraine could easily escalate. On the line for Russia are geopolitical and economic interests, not to mention face-saving concerns. For the United States and Europe, the transit of energy resources, strategic interests and leadership in supporting democracy are at stake. A hostile face-off between the two sides over Ukraine`s presidential election would not benefit Russia or the West — or Ukraine for that matter. Although the Bush administration has been accused of being too conciliatory in its handling of the crisis, a look at the progression of events demonstrate that U.S. officials have adeptly balanced conflicting considerations.

Human rights activist Garry Pogonyailo faces slander charge
11:08, 01/12/2004

The Minsk City Prosecutor’s Office has instituted criminal proceedings against human rights activist Garry Pogonyailo, deputy head of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee who is alleged to have slandered Belarusian leader Aleksandr Lukashenko in his interview with Sweden`s TV 4 channel.

Andrei Sannikov: Energy cooperation of Belarus with Europe broken down due to repressions against opposition • 14:59, 25/09/2007
President of PACE: «Dialog with Belarus is impossible without discharge of political prisoners» • 12:32, 25/09/2007
Authorities responsible for arrests on European March’s Eve • 17:56, 24/09/2007
Festival in Lutsk: Belarusians having right to freedom (Photo) • 11:48, 24/09/2007
Natallia Pyatkevich‘s reply to opposition? • 18:11, 21/09/2007
Aliaksandr Milinkevich invited European Leaders to the European March • 15:35, 21/09/2007
First steps must be taken by Belarusian authorities • 12:09, 21/09/2007
Official Minsk against Nuclear Weapons • 19:08, 20/09/2007
Georgia supporting Belarus in its “battle” with Russia • 13:58, 20/09/2007
Well-known public figures of Belarus insisting on dialogue • 19:15, 19/09/2007
6,000 AIDS-infected people registered in Belarus
15:22, 01/12/2004, Itar-Tass


Fate of unregistered religious communities still uncertain
14:25, 01/12/2004, By Geraldine Fagan, Forum 18 News Service

The State Committee for Religious and Ethnic Affairs has claimed that "over 99 per cent" of religious communities have re-registered under the repressive 2002 religion law, but some have undergone what the State Committee calls "self-liquidation". Forum 18 News Service notes that re-registered religious organisations have also essentially agreed to abide by harsh restrictions, such as one rejected by Baptists in Brest who do not agree with Article 14 of the law, which restricts a religious organisation to only functioning where it is registered. A charismatic church has received an official refusal as its premises have not been approved by the emergency services. One Messianic Jewish community told Forum 18 that city authorities are disputing its right to rent premises, claiming that rental of the premises concerned is prohibited. Religious groups can be liquidated if a public event they organise causes any harm to the "public interest", even alleged disruption to public transport. Non-Moscow Patriarchate Orthodox churches were effectively banned from re-registering.

District court in Minsk refuses to reinstate unionist in his job with air traffic control company
13:06, 01/12/2004

A judge of Minsk’s district court on Tuesday threw out an unlawful dismissal suit filed by the Belarusian Congress of Democratic Trade Unions (BCDTU) that demanded that a labor union activist be reinstated in his job with full back pay.

Belarus` debt to Russia`s Gazprom dn to $152 mln as of Oct 31
11:38, 01/12/2004, Prime-Tass

Belarus’ debt for natural gas supplies from Russia`s natural gas monopoly Gazprom fell to U.S. $152.0 million as of October 31 from $169.7 million at the start of the year, Valery Zagorodin, deputy general director of Belarus’ state gas pipeline monopoly Beltransgaz, told Prime-Tass Tuesday.

Belarus To Buy 100,000-150,000 Tons Grain In 2004-05
11:37, 01/12/2004, Dow Jones International News

Belarus is planning to buy 100,000-150,000 metric tons of milling wheat in the current marketing season, mainly in Russia and Ukraine, an Agriculture Ministry official said by telephone Tuesday. This is considerably less than in the previous season, owing to a grain harvest this year of seven million tons, the official said. In the 2003-04 marketing year Belarus imported 240,000 tons of milling wheat and 400,000 tons of feed grain.

Belarus Ready to Transfer Mozyr Oil Refinery Shares for Trust Management
11:36, 01/12/2004

According to the newspaper KOMMERSANT, SLAVNEFT president Yury Sukhanov plans to hold talks with BELNEFTEKHIM concern chairman Bronislav Sivoy and consider the Mozyr Oil Refinery`s business plan for 2005.

Key Suspect in Paul Klebnikov Murder Case Detained In Belarus
11:22, 01/12/2004, MosNews

One of the main suspects in the murder case of Paul Klebnikov, editor-in-chief of Forbes’ Russian edition, has been detained in Minsk. A man by the name of Kazbek, carrying ID papers with three different names, is believed to have masterminded the attack on the prominent journalist in July.

New Israeli ambassador to Belarus arrived in Minsk
11:09, 01/12/2004

The new Israeli ambassador, Zeev Ben Arie, arrived in Minsk on November 30, the Belarusian foreign ministry’s press office told BelaPAN. On his arrival, the ambassador was expected to apply to the Belarusian foreign ministry for official permission to reopen the Israeli embassy in Minsk. Israel closed its embassy in Belarus in July 2002, citing a lack of funds as the reason.

Foodstuffs to be removed from markets, aren’t they • 18:28, 30/07/2007
Students to be taught to love their home country • 16:14, 25/07/2007
«Basowiszcza-2007» • 14:00, 19/07/2007
Radioactive brick detained on the border • 17:37, 18/07/2007
Poland to join Schengen zone on January 1, 2008 • 16:59, 11/07/2007
Goods confiscated from entrepreneurs • 12:34, 04/07/2007
Sanitary authorities in Minsk suggest removing retail kiosks • 16:31, 19/06/2007
British embassy announces a change in visa application process • 15:38, 19/06/2007
Kidnapped Belarusian woman freed in Nigeria • 13:40, 17/05/2007
Belarusian entry makes Eurovision final • 15:29, 11/05/2007

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