The European Broadcasting Union has suspended the membership of the Belarusian broadcaster BTRC.
Having previously warned BTRC that its membership could be suspended, the European Broadcasting Union has now suspended the membership of the channel. This is the first time that the EBU has ever suspended the membership of a broadcaster to the Union.
When announcing the decision to progress with suspending the broadcasters membership at the end of May, the EBU stated that:
The EBU has been closely monitoring the suppression of media freedom in Belarus and have consistently called on BTRC, as a Member of the EBU, to uphold our core values of freedom of expression, independence and accountability.
Since the disputed elections last summer, we have been campaigning for the protection of independent journalism and freedom of expression in the country. We have publicly supported journalists at BTRC who have been protesting against government interference. We have also been monitoring BTRC’s coverage and have communicated our concerns to their management.
In recent weeks, we have been particularly alarmed by the broadcast of interviews apparently obtained under duress.
We have also monitored other BTRC broadcasts on this issue which have raised other serious and quite exceptional concerns.
In light of these exceptional developments, the Executive Board has no alternative other than to propose the suspension of BTRC’s membership of the EBU.
BTRC released the following statement last night, criticising the European Broadcasting Union and launching into a tirade about various EBU members and their reports on the situation in Belarus:
Belteleradiocompany with a smile and some satisfaction welcomes the long-awaited fact of the suspension of cooperation with the EBU – an organization that has not had, does not and will never have its own personal opinion. Having come to the EBU summits for years, we were surprised that the people gathered there were not interested in anything other than issues of gender equality and threats from Russia, and voting at the elections of leaders of different levels reminded us of the elections of dear Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev during the Soviet Union. Even the Communist Party of the Soviet Union did not see such unanimity. Everyone was always in favor there. Of course, this suggests that the EBU is a structure where everything is decided on the sidelines. And on the sidelines, not the EBU, which we have witnessed.
We have many friends in the EBU, and, of course, we have known for a long time that they are going to suspend our membership in the organization. At first we wanted to leave the union ourselves. It would be beautiful, but any farce must be brought to its climax. And we wanted to see, so what will they charge us? We watched with bated breath the titanic work of the EBU employees, who tried to justify the entire horror of showing on our air the statement of Roman Protasevich that he actually did not die. And they did it. EBU clerks deserve a vacation!
We are sorry for you, EBU leadership. The Chairman of the Belteleradiocompany recently spoke for several tens of minutes with the General Director of EBU Noel Carran. We feel sorry for him, and we do not judge him. He has a good job, a great position, and a decent salary. During the entire conversation, he was unable to present a single intelligible claim against Belteleradiocompany, except that “you are involved in this” and “Protasevich’s parents believe that he is being held hostage.” It was proved to him that we were not the first to distribute the video with Dedok and Protasevich. It is clear to the amateur that we did not shoot these videos, and now the whole world understands that there was no torture. Dedok is cheerful, fresh and happy to write another heroic page in his biography of the recidivist anarchist who set fire to the embassies of foreign states. There is nothing to say about Protasevich. Roman and his girlfriend Sapega live in apartments under house arrest, walk through Minsk parks and give interviews left and right. The regime’s atrocities have reached unprecedented proportions!
Of course, the EBU knows that Western countries participated in the preparation of the coup in Belarus. We all know that EBU members, public broadcasters in a number of countries, are servants of the ruling elites. Broadcasters from Poland, Lithuania, Czech Republic – their reports about Belarus remind us of the stories of American television in the worst years.
We draw your attention to the fact that, trumping us with the rules and principles of the EBU , the union did not react in any way to the facts of beating up our reporters during opposition rallies, harassment of our company’s employees BEFORE the elections, attacks on them, damage to personal property, publication of personal data and residence addresses. We do not need their protection, we did it ourselves, but nevertheless. They ignored the facts we proved of the endless lies of Deutsche Welle, ARD, Lithuanian television, the fabrication of a story about women’s marches by a Norwegian broadcaster, and a stream of low-quality false propaganda from one of the TVP channels (Belsat). We recently debunked another fake of this garbage can. The story about the “torture” of a taxi driver by law enforcement officers turned out to be a figment of the sick imagination of the journalist Belsat. The “hero” of the plot simply read the text she had invented on a dictaphone. For 100 euros. This shame of the European Broadcasting Union is the shining face of European journalism.
We promise to continue to tell truthfully about what is happening in the country and the world. That there was a riot in Belarus, that the demonstrations were not peaceful, and the EBU members are lying about it. We will show how in Holland they are crushing peaceful demonstrators who opposed COVID restrictions with horses and smearing them on the walls with water cannons. As in France, during the dispersal of a rave party, people are ripped off their hands. How an unarmed woman is point-blank killed in the US Parliament, and later she is declared an internal terrorist for this. How opposition channels are closed and journalists are being killed in Ukraine. How Russian-language media are closed in Latvia. How oppositional “spies” -journalists are imprisoned in Poland and the ruling party plunders money allocated to help immigrants from Belarus.
We will also save many millions of euros and fulfill the dream of the majority of Belarusians. No more Eurovision!
And all the agencies that already contact us with a proposal to take the place of the EBU – welcome!
Image Source: Mediasat | Source: BTRC