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Belarus jails Belsat TV journalists for filming protest

A Belarus court has ruled to jail two TV journalists for documenting protests against the country’s leader, Alexander Lukashenko. The two journalists, Daria Chultsova and Katerina Andreyeva, were arrested in a Minsk apartment block in November for live streaming an unauthorized protest. The women previously worked for the Poland-based Belsat TV outlet. Belsat TV rejected the accusation that the journalists disrupted bus services in the Belarusian capital by broadcasting the footage.

Former banker Viktor Babryko is also going on trial this week after being accused of taking bribes and money laundering while holding the position of head of Belgazprombank. The charges against Babaryko could amount to 15 years in prison. Seven of his former colleagues will join him on trial. Babaryko has denied any wrongdoing and his defense team claims the case was fabricated to prevent him from standing against Lukashenko in the recent elections. Babaryko was expected to be Lukashenko’s main challenger.

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