Belarus: EBU Executive Board has suspended Belarus Member BTRC

At a meeting today the EBU Executive Board agreed to suspend Belarus Member BTRC. Belarus were also suspended from the Eurovision Song Contrst 2021, after failing to provide an entry, which complied with the EBU’s rules.

A spokesman for the EBU announced:

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 will have two weeks to respond, before suspension comes into effect. Belarus last participated in the EurovisionnSong Contest in 2019 with the song by Zena.

Source: EBU
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