Belarus information minister accuses online media of ‘biased’ and ‘crooked’ journalism

Онлайн-конференция с министром информации Лилией Ананич прошла на сайте БЕЛТА Онлайн-конференция с министром информации Беларуси Лилией Ананич на тему "Новый закон о СМИ" прошла на сайте БЕЛТА. На снимках: 1-3. Лилия Ананич. 4. во время онлайн-конференции. Фото Николая Петрова, БелТА.

The information space of Belarus will never be used as an ‘arena for fueling tensions and destructive processes’, Belarusian information minister Liliya Ananich said during the TV show Club of Editors broadcasted by Belarus One TV channel on Sunday.

“Internet, which aspires to the role of mass media, gave rise to a certain phenomenon: one takes words out of context and dishes them up as prescribed by their editor. <…> If a journalist poorly is not strong in any given problem but tries to attract readers’ attention by a catchy headline, it will result in a biased and crooked journalism. This is not journalism, this is not professionalism, it is destructive,” the information minister said.

Commenting on the recent beating of the journalist and two activists in court, Ananich stressed that Pavel Dabravolsky was taking an active part in ‘the conflict’.

“We received an official response from the Ministry of the Interior, which clearly indicates a violation of law and proves that measures taken against the participants of the incident were legal. A journalist cannot be an active party of the conflict. If such thing happens, it’s not journalism but an action aimed at discrediting the profession,” Ananich said.

In January , journalist Pavel Dabravolski was beaten in Frunzenski district court of Minsk while covering the ‘graffiti case.’ He claimed that several riot police officers beat him with their feet for 20 minutes, paying no attention to his journalist ID. According to Dabravolski, they took his phone and erased all the data.

Read also: Travesty of justice: Minsk police tight-lipped about beating journalist in court

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