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Belsat: There Are Several Belarusians Who Did Not Read "Charter"

Belsat: There Are Several Belarusians Who Did Not Read "Charter"

Video of Belsat TV channel is devoted to the 20th anniversary of Charter97.org.

Our colleagues from Charter97.org keep experiencing an increased pressure. Over 20 years of work they made through many challenges: blocking, mysterious death of founder of the website Oleg Bebenin on the eve of the presidential elections-2010. However, "Charter" has survived and it's getting more and more popular not only in Belarus but also abroad, video plot of Vitovt Sivchik says.

There are many opinions about "Charter-97": some people blame it for biased approach, others believe that this is one of the last media not controlled by the KGB. Anyway, there are few Belarusians who do not use the Internet and ignore the source.

Homel residents:

- It provides with quite interesting news. And I like the way they serve it.

- Of course, there are points of weakness, but it seems to me that people see "Charter" from one side only.

- There is much information which is not published by official media. Here I can read about every event in Belarus.

- I like that it tells the truth.

Today the website celebrates its 20th anniversary, and we can see how numerous its audience is.

Natallia Radzina, the editor-in-chief of Charter97.org, says:

- Before blocking, Charter97.org was read by a half of adult population of Belarus, over the past months the website had 4 million unique visitors from our country.

The blocking has been lasting for 8 months. This is the longest restriction set on the opposition resource, but it's not a unique. "Charter-97" was blocked in the midst of political resistance, during the presidential elections in 2001 and 2006. It was hacked after the Square-2010.

Leader of the Belarusian Congress (BNC) Mikalai Statkevich asserts:

- The source is hazardous, because it has an influence. Unlike the major part of media resources, "Charter" covers this shameful legal fact that Belarus is the only European country with the power controlled by a criminal gang headed by the former president.

The editorial office had to pay a great price for its position. 3.5 months prior to the so-called presidential elections of 2010 founder and first head of the website Oleg Bebenin was found hanged in his summer cottage. There was no farewell message found. The investigation stated it was a suicide. Colleagues believe that Oleg Bebenin was killed, which put the team of presidential candidate Andrei Sannikov on the back foot.

- When Oleg was found, he had hematomas on his body; he had marks on his knuckles. He did not wear either contact lenses or glasses, though his eyesight was -10, that is he could barely something. He was helpless, Natallia Radzina says.

During the dispersal of the Square-2010 Natallia Radzina was beaten and put behind KGB bars for more than a month. Later the editorial office moved to Warsaw. After protests of 2017 the authorities of Belarus blocked the website to minimize the influence of "Charter-97". Meanwhile, now the website sufferes unexpected challenges. International funds aimed to support democracy and human rights refuse to finance the Internet-resource.

- Funds support European officials who shake hands with Lukashenka. But it's a shortfall policy which causes great repercussions, Natallia Radzina says.

Today the website asks for financial assistance to its readers and supporters. Information is available on pages of Charter97.org.



Bank's name: Bank Millennium S.A.

Address: ul. Stanislawa Zaryna, 2A, 02-593, Warszawa

IBAN: PL 97 1160 2202 0000 0002 1671 1123


Name of the account holder: Fundacja “KARTA ‘97”

Purpose/title of payment: Donation for statuary aims

You can contact us by the e-mail [email protected]

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