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Belarusian PEN searched, its account frozen

20.07.2021, 15:03
Belarusian PEN club
Belarusian PEN club

In Belarus, the PEN Club’s account was frozen and office was searched, as Chytomo reported.

The bank account of the Belarusian PEN Club was blocked due to decision of the Investigative Committee of Belarus of July 13.

In addition, the Deputy Chairman of the Board of the PEN Club Tetyana Nyadbay said on her Facebook page that a search was conducted at the legal address of the organization on July 14.

“Due to the pandemic, the organization has been working remotely for over a year, so we were not physically present at the legal address. The Belarusian Main Directorate for Combating Organized Crime and Corruption searched another organization with the same legal address, confiscated all equipment, and the organization's employees became witnesses in the case, ”commented Tetyana Nyadbay.

The Belarusian PEN Club was founded in 1989. He became part of the International PEN Club in 1990. In 2019, the president of the Belarusian PEN Club became Svetlana Aleksievich, writer and Nobel laureate for litterature.

As IMI reported quoting BAJ, on July 18, in 60 days more than 60 searches were conducted in the media outlets and the homes of journalists in Belarus.

As IMI reported, on July 14, mass searches and detentions of activists, human rights activists, and journalists took place throughout Belarus. In particular, searches took place in the offices of at least 13 NGOs, including the Viasna Human Rights Center,  the Lawtrend rights group, the Association of the World's Belarusians Batslaushchyna (Fatherland), the Names project, the Territory of Rights group, the Gender Perspectives human rights organization, the Belarusian Association of Journalists, the Union of Belarusian Writers, the Belarusian Popular Front, the For Freedom movement, and the BEROC Center of Economic Investigations.

On July 16, security forces in Belarus searched journalists working for Belsat TV. 

On the same day in Minsk, in the office of the Belarusian service of Radio Svoboda, during a search, security officers broke down doors and seized equipment.

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