Homiel: Freelance journalist heavily fined for livestreaming for Belsat

Homiel region court imposed BYN 805 fine on journalist Larysa Shchyrakova for violation of media law (Art. 22.9 of the Administrative Code).

May Day protest in Homiel

On May 1, Shchyrakova was livestreaming and covering the protest rally which was authorized by Homiel authorities. However, the local police detained the woman and drew up a protocol on her for ‘illegal production of media products’.

Over the past two years Larysa Shchyrakova has been brought to administrative responsibility for the performance of her professional duties more than ten times.

Although Belsat TV is located in Poland, many journalists and contributors work in Belarus. As the Belarusian Foreign Ministery has repeatedly denied registration to the TV station for political reasons, its contributors are at the authorities’ gunpoint for working without it.

In February-March, there has been an eruption of protesting the so-called ‘parasite’ law in Belarus. Hundreds of Belarusians were detained, fined, jailed after recent non-parasite marches. Most of them were accused of violating the order of holding mass events and disobedience to police officers’ demands. It should be noted that plainclothes policemen who refuse to show their IDs a or introduce themselves often beat people and prevented journalists from performing their professional duties.