A journalistic center will be established in Białystok for representatives of various Belarusian editorial offices who – for political reasons – cannot operate in their own country. The city leased the premises on preferential terms. Thanks to this, journalists will be able to broadcast messages to their native media and recipients, or create new media projects.
– I wish the journalists who will use the premises that they can work there for a free, democratic Belarus and that this work will bring positive results as soon as possible – said the deputy president of Białystok Zbigniew Nikitorowicz on Monday (30 August).
Thus, the city authorities handed over to the representatives of the Linking Media foundation the keys to the municipal premises at ul. Sienkiewicza 44. The premises will be a place where Belarusian journalists of various editorial offices who – for political reasons – had to leave their country, will be able to continue their work.
– Currently, in prisons and detention centers in Belarus, there are – according to various data – 26 or 27 journalists and journalists, and about a hundred journalists have been forced to leave the country – said the representative of the Linking Media foundation Maria Sadowska-Komlacz, a journalist from Belarus, who has been living in Poland for 15 years.
She emphasized that Belarusian journalists are flying to Georgia, Ukraine, Lithuania and Latvia. And, earlier and now, also to Poland.
Newsroom for Belarusian journalists
– The restaurant in Białystok will be a kind of newsroom where journalists will be able to feel part of the community again. Realize that they are in a real editorial office, where they can either continue to broadcast news to their native media and recipients, or maybe together – including Belarusian and Polish journalists – to create new media projects – explained Sadowska-Komlacz.
In the journalistic center at ul. Sienkiewicza 44 will be working, forced to leave Belarus, incl. representatives of the Mogilev Region and Hrodna.life portals.
Alexei Szota: journalists will know where they can come
Alexei Szota, the editor-in-chief and publisher of the latter, stated that the place would also be a point for journalists who might still want to leave or will be forced to leave in the coming months or days.
– Now they will know one hundred percent where they can go. That there is a place where they will be welcomed, they will be able to work – he emphasized.
Rental on preferential terms
The Białystok magistrate applied preferential rental conditions. The fees will be PLN 752.76. The room is 73 square meters. Requires a minor renovation. The premises have been rented for a year, with the possibility of extending the contract.
– It is our duty to support Belarusians, political refugees persecuted by the regime of Alexander Lukashenka. Białystok is a particularly good place for this type of support and activity. We are neighbors, Grodno is our brother city. I believe that it is also an investment by the Białystok local government and Poland in general in good neighborhood with a democratic Belarus – said Vice President Nikitorowicz.
The restaurant is located in the center of Białystok, in a tenement house at 44 Sienkiewicza Street
tvn24.pl, PAP, City Hall in Białystok
Main photo source: Marcin Jakowiak / UM in Białystok