Minsk: Firemen Seal Office of Association of Belarusians Batskaushchyna
According to RFE/RL
On 3 March in Minsk firemen sealed the office of the Association of Belarusians
Batskaushchyna. The chair of the association’s council Alena Makouskaia said: ‘Everything started in the morning, when our lenders (the Unitarian enterprise Spadchyna) and the fire inspectorate came to the office. They examined the rooms and composed a report. They also gave some remarks, but they didn’t say we would have to suspend our activity. Nevertheless, at 5 p.m. the lenders and the inspectorate visited our office and stated the electric wiring of the house was in the state of emergency, that’s why all people were to leave their working places in five-minutes, because the electricity would be turned off and the office would be sealed. They said it about the ground floor, the offices on all other floors continued working. We were given some times to collect our belongings and some documents. We were also told Spadchyna would attempt to fix the wires and we would be able to come to work on Wednesday or Thursday. We have never had any problems with electricity and wiring. This year the building will undergo a big repair.
However, the situation looks a bit strange, because at the end of 2005 or in the beginning of 2006 the office was examined by the fire inspector who, according to our information, was satisfied with the results of the examination. That’s why it’s quite difficult to say why this examination gave such results.
On the eve of the presidential election the situation is quite tense. However, we would like to abstain from any commentaries till the day on which they said we could start working.’