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Two journalists, 23 and 27, get two years in jail for live-streaming a protest in Belarus

February 18, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.

Compression ratio: 60.9%. 1 min read.

Belsat TV journalists Katerina Bakhvalova (R) (reporting for the TV channel under the name of Andreeva) and Daria Chultsova (L), who were detained in November while reporting on anti-government protests, embrace each other in a defendant's cage during their trial in Minsk on February 18, 2021. - The journalists were sentenced to two years in prison on charges of organising illegal demonstrations. (Photo by STRINGER / AFP) (Photo by STRINGER/AFP via Getty Images)

A court in Belarus sentenced two journalists with the independent Belsat TV channel to two years in prison for live-streaming a demonstration, their employer and Belarussian Association of Journalists said in statements following the court hearing Thursday.

Moscow (CNN)A court in Belarus sentenced two journalists with the independent Belsat TV channel to two years in prison for live-streaming a demonstration, their employer and Belarussian Association of Journalists said in statements following the court hearing Thursday.

Journalists Darya Chultsova, 23, and Yekaterina Andreyeva, 27, were detained in November while covering a demonstration in memory of an opposition activist who died in Minsk a few days before.

The court on Thursday ruled that Chultsova and Andreyeva are guilty of "organizing a demonstration that grossly violates public order. "

According to the investigators, Belsat reported, the journalists allegedly gathered protesters by talking about it on air, which then led to "interruptions of public transport in the area. " Chultsova and Andreyeva maintain they are innocent.

Belarussian human rights group Viasna designated Chultsova and Andreyeva as political prisoners and said charges against them are drawn up because of their journalistic work.

Belsat is a politically independent TV channel based in Poland that primarily reports on Belarus.

CNN and other outlets previously reported on torture in detention centers described by former detainees and their families as well as persecution opposition activists faced in Belarus.

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