“Extremist” photobook: pictures under taboo

According to Hrodna ideologists, the contents of photobook Belarus Press Photo 2011 compromises on honour and dignity of the citizens of the Republic of Belarus. Which pictures have been recognised extremist?

On April 5, 2013 it became known that according to the KGB and the expert panel the photobook includes “distorted and untrue pictures of Belarus’ political, economic, social and other fields of life”. Photoreporter Yuliya Darashkevich, one of the organisers of the contest, posted the full text of the expert opinion on the photobook on her Facebook: even pictures in categories “Sports” and “Nature” have been treated as “insulting” saying nothing of the ones which hold up a mirror to Belarusian social and political day-to-day realities.

The board that expertized the photobook included Vadzim Khilyuta, the HOC of the department of criminal law and criminology of Law Faculty at Hrodna University, Aksana Shulga, the HOC of foreign languages department at Hrodna University, Aliaksandr Bondar, assistant professor of Arts Faculty at Hrodna University, and Pavel Skrabko, the Head of Ideology Department in Hrodna Executive Committee. The latter can boast of experience of that kind: earlier he tried to find elements of libel on the Belarusian president and discrediting the country in Andrzej Poczobut’s articles.

In November 2012 Belarusian custom officers seized 41 copies of photobook Belarus Press Photo – 2011. On April 17, 2013 the court session in Ashmiany is to determine the future of the confiscated books. It is notheworthy that the session will be held in camera “to prevent disclosure of the information on the contents before any court decision is taken”.


Photos http://pressphoto.by : Siarhei Hudzilin, Siarhei Hryts, Aliaksandr Vasyukevich, Viktar Drachou, Dzmitry Kliapitsky, Andrey Liankevich.

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