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BelaPAN’s statement on blockage of its websites

The IP addresses of BelaPAN’s websites belapan.by, belapan.com and naviny.by were blocked on December 20.

It is still unknown who did that and for what reason. However, it is clear that the decision to block the ID addresses could only be made by authorities as in Belarus the government has monopoly on providing IP addresses.

BelaPAN had not received any official warning or notification about the coming blockage.

The new amendments to the Media Law, which allow the blockage of websites, will come into force only on January 1, 2015. In this regard we view the blockage of the IP addresses of BelaPAN as a gross infringement of freedom of expression and media freedom in Belarus.

We are taking all possible measures to obtain exhaustive information from government agencies as to who made the decision to block our websites and on what grounds.

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