Lukashenka attacks media: Throw them out if they call for Maidans

Alyaksandr Lukashenka / Reuters​
Alyaksandr Lukashenka / Reuters​

On July 23, Alyaksandr Lukashenka spoke emotionally and harshly about some non-state and foreign-registered media outlets. He is dissatisfied with the work of the presidential administration and other state bodies in the "information field," BelTA state news agency reports. He did not agree that it was about online media only and also mentioned printed newspapers. Lukashenka was particularly outraged by the Russia-owned Komsomolskaya Pravda in Belarus. "It's going to turn into a tabloid soon," he said. "You see, their leader, sitting in Moscow, or maybe in the Kremlin, made a statement, and biased presentation of information began."

Alyaksandr Lukashenka advised journalists to go "into the field, where today is a real battle, a struggle for the harvest ... an unprecedented harvest," and take photos of the "combine harvester" and report on "ordinary people, those who feed the country.

"Look, we are the masters in this country!" Lukashenka told to the participants of the meeting. "Perform your duties. If you can't, say so... Others will do it."

The head of state mentioned a number of foreign-registered media which provided live video streams from street rallies in Belarus. He saw them not only as biased but also as calling for "mass disorder." "Why do you tolerate them?" Lukashenka asked the audience. "You accredited them here." He urged not to wait for "the end of the election campaign." "Expel them out of here if they do not comply with our laws and if they call people to Maidans," said the Belarusian leader. He referred to the fact that he was outraged by the insults to him and to the chairpersons of precinct election commissions.