In Belarus, 3 journalists from the Belapan News Agency, were sentenced to prison sentences ranging from 4 to 14 years. The sentenced journalists Andrei Aliaksandrau, Dzmitry Navazhylau and Iryna Leushyna, denied the charges.
Belapan had reported on the nationwide 2020 protests for the resignation of President Aleksandr Lukashenko. The Belarusian State Security Committee declared Belapan an “extremist” group.
“CPJ is alarmed by today’s sentencing of three BelaPAN journalists in a politically motivated case and denounces the witch hunt against the country’s leading independent news agency,” said Gulnoza Said, CPJ’s Europe and Central Asia program coordinator, in New York. “Belarusian authorities must immediately release Andrei Aliaksandrau, Dzmitry Navazhylau, Iryna Leushyna, and all other imprisoned members of the press, and let the media work freely.”
Belarus was the world’s fifth-worst jailer of journalists, with at least 19 journalists behind bars on December 1, 2021, when CPJ published its most recent prison census. Source: https://cpj.org/2022/10/cpj-condemns-belarus-witch-hunt-after-three-belapan-journalists-sentenced-to-lengthy-prison-terms/