Belarus is becoming even more politically and economically dependent on Russia.
People's Deputy of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, ex-adviser to the Minister of Internal Affairs Anton Gerashchenko stated that, commenting on the blocking of the Charter97.org site in Belarus:
– The non-acceptance of freedom of speech has become a tradition in Belarus, therefore, any actions of the authorities against the media, expressing a different point of view, are possible.
The blocking of Charter-97 is quite an obvious reaction to the information resource’s stand.
The increase of the Russian media’s influence in Belarus will become one of the consequences. This will lead to imbalance in the information space.
Now Belarusians have no access to objective information, which would allow them to form their independent attitude regarding a lot of important events. And these events may directly affect Belarus as a state entity.
It's no secret that Russia has a plan to strengthen its influence in the countries of the former USSR, and they are ready to implement it both through direct military aggression and through information or economic aggression, as it is done in Belarus.
There are Russian special services on the territory of Belarus, and citizens of Ukraine cannot feel safe there. Anyone of them can be kidnapped, as it happened to Pavel Grib. One can be accused on far-fetched claims, as it was in journalist Pavel Sharoiko’s case. All those, to put it mildly, do not improve our relations. But we must not forget the reality that exists today: for now, we must realize that Belarus is a state dependent on Russia politically and economically.
I want to advise Belarusians to use modern methods of bypassing Internet-blocking more actively. There is a huge number of ways in the world to read the sites banned by the authorities, including Charter 97.