Updated at 14:58,21-10-2016

KGBzation of Army and Ideologization of Media

07-12-2009, 16:42

Alyaksandr Lukashenka reshuffled top officials and replaced ministers of defense and information by even more ill-famed personalities.

Former state secretary of the Security Council Yury Zhadobin has been appointed minister of defense. He was the KGB head before.

Yury Zhadobin was born in Dnepropetrovsk (Ukraine) in 1954. He moved to Belarus in 1990. it was Zhadobin who said during the presidential campaign 2004 that the EU was preparing assassination attempt on Lukashenka. In response, the Belarusian ruler harshly attacked the EU.

Leanid Maltsau, the former defense minister, has been appointed state secretary of the Security Council.

Mikalai Korbut has been appointed head of the Property Management Directorate of the President. The appropriate decree was signed on December 4. Korbut was the first deputy head at the directorate. He has replaced Mikalai Damashkevich, who occupied this post since January 10, 2008.

Former main ideologist Pralyaskouski appointed minister of information. Famous for tightening screws in ideology, Pralyaskouski will now deal with the press.

Alyaksandr Lukashenka has signed a decree appointing Aleh Pralyaskouski, former head of the Information and Analysis Center at Lukashenkas Administration, minister of information instead of Uladzimir Rusakevich.

Uladzimir Rusakevich, 62, has headed the Minister of information for more than nine years, since August 3, 2003.

Aleh Pralyaskouski, 46, was born in Sergiev Pasad near Moscow. He graduated from Minsk air defense missile engineering school in 1985. In 1998, he graduated from law faculty of Belarusian State University (with specialization in jurisprudence).

He served in the Group of Soviet Forces in Germany, occupied different posts in Minsk air defense missile engineering school and Military Academy of Belarus, headed a department in the ideological directorate of the Presidents Administration. Worked as a director general of Belarusian Telegraph Agency.

On March 25, 2003, appointed deputy head of the Presidents Administration, on January 9, 2007 presidents aide and head of the Main Ideological Department at the Presidents Administration. On January 10, 2008, was appointed director of the Information and Analysis Center at the Presidents Administration.

Pralyaskouski insisted on "strengthening responsibility for information on the internet" when discussing the adoption of the new Law on Mass Media. He also suggested lying responsibility for spreading information via the internet not only on website administrators, but also on an internet-resource owner and provider.

He thinks state control over the internet should contain of a complex of legislative and management measures. "Responsibility for spreading wrongful information on the internet should be strengthened on legislative level. If information appears on a site, an administrator, an owner of the resource and a provider must be responsible for this," Pralyaskouski said.

"What concerns the management measures, we need to think about the so called content filtration. It is a technique that allows users and local networks administrators to block access to the sites containing the information that conflicts with the current legal system or contradicts the norms of public morality," the official stated.

The official also wrote offensive articles about the opposition and met with Belarusian rock musicians offering them access to TV and radio in exchange for the promise not to play at opposition rallies under Belarusian national white-red-white flags.