| POLITICS |
Nemiga Stampede Process Resumed
Trial Over “Pagonya” Reporters Politically Motivated Says BHC
The Moskovsky district court of Minsk opened hearings on the legal lawsuit of relatives of the victims of May 30, 1999 stampede in the Nemiga metro station’s underpass. Defendants are the police department of the Minsk city hall, the Minsk city hall itself and the “Class club DK Ltd.”, responsible for ensuring public order at the event. Third persons are the “Olivariya” brewery and the “Mir” radio station.
PACE Set On Alert Over Belarus-OSCE Conflict
The Belarusian Helsinki Committee passed a statement concerning the hearings in the Leninsky district court of Grodno of a lawsuit against the editor-in-chief of the newspaper “Pagonya” Nikolai Markevich and journalist Pavel Mozheiko over libeling president Lukashenko. The human rights organization believes that the course of the process testifies to the fact that the court “does not intend to keep to the universally recognized principles of justice: independence, impartiality, transparency, lawfulness, presumption of innocence, right for defense etc.”
According to the BHC, these days Grodno witnesses abominable arbitrariness. “Today nobody doubts that the case is politically motivated,
” – stress the human rights defenders.
“Dribinsky” State Farm Strikes Over Salary Payment Delays
Said special rapporteur for Belarus of the PACE Political Committee Wolfgang Berendt during his meeting with the leadership of the Belarusian national assembly. “We realize that this conflict must be resolved between the government and the OSCE representatives,”
- stressed Berendt: “This situation also influences the character of our relations”. According to Berendt, “all European organizations consider the situation with the OSCE to be a complication of the bilateral relations with Belarus”,
Gomel “Komintern” Workers Sent on Vacation
The technicians of the “Dribinsky” collective farm in the Mogilev region went on a one-day long strike, demanding the payment of salaries. All in all there protested over 40 individuals. The state farmers consented to stop their action not until the plant’s leadership promised to return to the husbandry the indebtedness of the processing companies by the end of the week, which means there emerged certain hope to get the money.
Dollar Rate Rose to 1,800 BLR
“Komintern” joint stock company is isolated from the exterior world owing to their unpaid phone bills, including the one of the director general Vyacheslav Legchilin. The workers claim that the man doesn’t appear on his working place.
Belarus Urged to Provide Evidence of Commitment to OSCE
Last week (June 3-9) the US dollar rate’s ratio to the Belarusian ruble increased at the majority of currency market segments. At the bargains on the state currency stock exchange the dollar rose by 0,5% in price (from 1,771 to 1,779). The euro rate went 1,5% up (from 1,600 to 1,685), Russian ruble – by 0,2% (from 56,57% to 56,66%), reports BelaPAN.
Arrested Deputy Director General of Minsk Motor Plant
US Ambassador in the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Stephan M. Minikes said that “it is simply impossible to square Belarus` stated desire for cooperation with the OSCE with its expulsion of two international officials representing this organization in Minsk.”
Minikes told the participants of the June 6 OSCE PC session in Vienna that he wonders whether Belarus will be able to provide “authoritative, constructive, and reliable evidence of its commitment, from the highest levels of its Government, that it is prepared to forge cooperation with the OSCE and address significant concerns through the work of the OSCE presence in Belarus.” Minkes added that “if such concrete steps are not forthcoming, we all need to consider the implications this carries given Belarus` shared commitments to the principle of cooperation.”
Following read the full text of his speech:
PACE Delegation to Monitor Situation in Belarus
Deputy director general of the Minsk motor plant Alexander Masalov is charged with the illicit storage of cartridges for fire arms. Radio Svaboda reports that a 28-year old Alexander Masalov is nephew of the plant’s director general Nikolai Lobach. The company’s employees don’t rule out a possibility that soon the former deputy director, who was responsible for finances, will face additional charges.
Back into Communist Past: Vasil Bykov Comes Under Censorship
Eight MPs of the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly arrived yesterday in the capital of Belarus, Among them are: are specially invited rapporteur on Belarus from the PACE Political Council Wolfgang Berendt (Germany), former employee of this committee Terry Davis (Great Britain), head of the delegation of the Lithuanian Sejm in PACE Enas Chakuolis, deputy chair of the Committee for labor and social policy of the Russian State Duma Tatyana Yarygina and others.
US Ambassador in Belarus: Plenty of Time to Make a Choice
Popular Belarusian writer Vasil Bykov will be allowed to publish his writings in the “Neman” journal not until “he writes something, that would be equal in power and strength to Alexander Prokhanov’s “Mr.Geksogen” about the present situation in our country,”
said in an interview to the “Belorusskaya Gazeta” editor-in-chief of the “Neman” Nina Chaika.
11:10, 11/06/2002, “BDG”
“Independent Newspaper”: Hrustchev’s Dismissal Linked to Arms Sales
Events, which are underway in Belarus, continue to trouble the world community. The situation grew especially tense after the authorities actually banished from our country the OSCE mission’s diplomats. Statements by representatives of the international organizations and western countries became harsher. The “BDG” correspondent asked to comment on the situation the US ambassador in Minsk Michael Kozak:
Lukashenko Plays Hockey in Russia
Russian “Nezavisimaya Gazeta” shared its own version of a dismissal of the chair of the KGB Department for military intelligence Konstantin Khrustchev. According to the newspaper, the agency long ago got into disfavor among the top brass. The military reconnaissance had been many times rebuked over the information leaks to the media, including the arms deals.
Belarusian-Syrian Commission Convenes in Minsk
Great hockey fan Alexander Lukashenko engaged in a game of hockey between the veterans of Russia and Belarus. The game between the teams from Petersburg and Belarus in the Ice Palace of Saint-Petersburg ended in 4:9 in Lukashenko’s team’s favor. His teammates were the Minister of sport and tourism Evgeny Vorsin, soccer player Mikhail Zakharov and son of the Belarusian president Viktor Lukashenko.
Lukashenko Deceives Russian Oil Tycoons
Second session of the joint Belarusian-Syrian commission on trade, economic and technical cooperation will be held on June 11 in the Ministry of economy of the Republic of Belarus. The session will take place within the framework of a visit to Belarus of the delegation of the Syrian Arab Republic, headed by the Minister of economy and foreign trade Gassan Al-Rifai. The delegation includes representatives of various ministries and business circles of Syria.
11:06, 11/06/2002, Gazeta.ru
Pension Payments Shifted by 4 Days
The government of Belarus announced the conditions for privatizing the country’s oil chemistry, which presents interest to a few large Russian companies. The conditions turned out to be so unfavorable that privatization may never happen.
“Belneftehim” Raises Prices on Oil Goods
Starting from June the payments of pensions in the Brest region will be moved 4 days forward. Such a decision was passed by the Brest region committee in connection with the shortage of resources in the social protection foundation. The pensioners were told this on the days of payment, which provoked utter dissatisfaction among the pensioners, reports BelaPAN.
Ukrainians get a whiff of Russian gas
“Belneftehim” oil concern, operating on the Belarusian market, established on June 7, 2002 new wholesale prices on gas, as well as new retail prices on fuel, sold via the company’s gas stations’ network. As you know, the last time the concern raised prices on May 23, 2002.
11:02, 11/06/2002, Gazeta.ru
Russia will help Ukraine manage and develop its obsolete gas pipeline grid and is ready to `forget` about the construction of a bypass gas route via Belarus and Poland, according to an agreement reached between Vladimir Putin and Leonid Kuchma during their talks in St. Petersburg on Sunday.