Week 22, May 17-23

May 23rd, 2011   Theme: Belarus

Stanislau Suskievic, the first head of independent Belarus, is called to the KGB for interrogation about the blast in Minsk underground on April 11.

May 17

Stanislau Suskievic, the first head of independent Belarus, is called to the KGB for interrogation about the blast in Minsk underground on April 11. Stanislau Suskievic himself was in Brussels on April 11 for a meeting with European parliamentarians regarding the situation in Belarus.

Andrej Asaviec, resident of the town of Pinsk, is fined by the local Court with 700.000 Belarusian roubles (about 100€) for resisting the Police to take fingerprints. Andre Asaviec asked the Police officers to provide him with the official papers explaining the request to take his prints, since there is no law in Belarus which makes this obligatory. Instead, the Police officers suggested that Andrej Asaviec sign a paper stating that he refused voluntarily. After that, they initiated an administrative case against him.

Jauhien Lipkovic, a well-known Belarusian blogger, is fined by the Piersamajski District Court in Minsk with 525.000 Belarusian roubles (about 75€) for insulting the head of the State Union of Belarusian Writers, General Mikalaj Carhiniec. Mikalaj Carhiniec accused the blogger of “intentionally denigrating the honour and dignity of a person expressed in a rude form”. Jauhien Lipkovic burnt a book by Carhinietc “The Secret of an Oval Office” in Minsk’s Sevastopal Park on March 19, 2011.

The state prosecutor demands the court to sentence former oppositional candidate Mikalaj Statkevich (Social Democratic Party) to eight years of imprisonment in a reinforced prison, oppositional candidate Dzmitry Us (independent) to seven years, and Alaksandr Klaskouski, a former Police officer to 8,5 years..

May 18

The Police arrest about 15 civil activists from the LGBT movement and youth organisation of the Social Democratic Party Young Assembly during the action against homophobia near the Presidential Administration in the city of Minsk.

A bus with riot policemen arrived to the place and the officers surrounded the activists, apprehending them and placeting them ina bus. The activists were taken to the nearest Police station and released after a few hours, without charges.

Three Barysau residents are still unable to find jobs after they were fired in the aftermath of the 2010 presidential election.

Iryna Pankaviec, mother of Zmicier Pankaviec, who is the head of the department on politics at the largest independent newspaper Nasha Niva, was fired by the administration of a local secondary school after she was sentenced to ten days of arrest for participating in the 19 December 2010 Minsk post-election protest. Following the election, Barysau authorities cancelled the licenses of two local entrepreneurs, Michail Vasiljeu and Viktar Zviezdzin, after they participatedin the activities of Uladzimir Niakliayeu’s Barysau campaign office. Three more local residents involved in Andrej Sannikau’s and Uladzimir Niakliayeu’s campaign teams were forced to leave Belarus, having encountered harassment for their election-related activity.

May 19

Jauhien Vaskovic, Pavel Syramolatau and Arciom Prakapenka, activists of the Belarusian anarchist movement, have been found guilty of committing an arson attack on the KGB building in the town of Babrujsk and sentenced to seven years of imprisonment in a reinforced prison.

Uladzimir Niapomniascych, democratic activist in the town of Homiel, is detained once again by the Police for wearing a T-shirt with an anti-governmental slogan. He is brought to the closest Police station but released shortly after without charges. The activist had already been detained for wearing the T-shirt some time ago.

May 20

Uladzimir Niaklajeu (Tell the Truth) and Vital Rymaseuski (Belarusian Christian democracy), former oppositional candidates in the presidential elections 2010, are sentenced to two years conditional sentence by the Frunzienski District Court of the City of Minsk. A number of activists of the Uladzimir Niakliayeu’s election campaign were sentenced to one yearconditional punishment:Siarhei Vazniak, Aliaksandr Fiaduta and Andrei Dzmitryjeu. Nasta Palazhanka, a well known oppositional activist from the youth organisation of the Young Front and an agent in the election campaign of Vital Rymasheuski, was also sentenced to one year of conditional punishment.

The verdicts for the two former oppositional candidates, Dzmitry Uss and Mikola Statkevich, that were supposed to have been announced today were postponed due to the official explanation that the judge was ill.

May 21

Maksim Viniarski, well-known democratic activist from the oppositional movement European Belarus, is sentenced to 15 days imprisonment by the Frunzienski District Court of the city of Minsk. The activist is accused of disorderly conduct and disobedience to the Police in accordance with the article 17.1 of the Belarusian law.

May 22

The activists of the United Civil Party in the town of Homiel keep appealing executive restrictions on holding rallies enforced by the city authorities, after Homel officials banned a picket on 23 February. The ban was followed by an appeal, which was eventually dismissed by Homel Central District Court.

On 19 May, the UCP activists filed a complaint with Homel Regional Court, demanding a reversal of the earlier verdict.

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