Not a great one for formal celebrations but it is worth noting that the Universal Postal Union was formed on October 9th, 1874 in Berne , Switzerland, and philatelists celebrate today as World Post Day.
Today the UPU, with 189 member countries, oversees the co-ordination of the global postal service, the world's largest physical distribution network.
Despite the web and satellite based telephony Postal services in all countries provide a primary means of communication for people, organisations and business. The goal is to ensure a universal postal service that is easily accessible, efficient and affordable.... and one would like to think doesn't involve the state snooping on it's content.
The pic shows blonde and beautiful Byelorussian lady dancers performing at World Post Day celebrations organized by Belpochta, the Belarus Postal Service.
On the 28th November 2006 , Reporters Without Borders expressed their condemnation of the removal of many independent newspapers from the list of publications to be distributed next year by the Belarusian state postal service, Belpochta, which has a monopoly of subscription press delivery and believes it can pick and choose what it delivers.
The delivery ban will hit four national newspapers - Narodnaya Volya, Nasha Niva, Tovarich, Svobodnie Novosti Plus - and many regional ones, including Brestski Kurier, Vitebski Kurier, Borisovskie Novosti, Gazeta Slonimskaya, Intex-press, Lyahavitski Chas, Volnaye Hlybokaue, Hantsavitski Chas & Miastsovi Chas.
“This is yet another bid by the Belarusian government to silence the independent press by depriving it of its means of existence,” Reporters Without Borders said. “As shown by the case of the newspaper Solidarnost, which stopped publishing at the end of 2005, severance of the postal delivery contract is often the prelude to closure.”
The distribution system dates back to the Soviet era. Two state companies have monopolies. Belsouzpechat delivers newspapers to news stands, while Belpochta delivers them to subscribers. The state’s control of these companies means the pro-government press gets preferential treatment while distribution of critical media can be blocked altogether
An independent Byelorussian state was pronounced in March 1918 by an administration in Minsk known as Rada, but it existed only for nine months until the establishment of the Byelorussian Soviet Republic.
The military administration of Rada, known as BNR (Byelorussian National Republic) lasted for several decades.
The short-lived Rada government in Minsk issued three stamps in 1918 - this ( 2 Kopeks) is one of them.