Vitebsk Police Kicks Out Barys Khamayda from Library

2006 2006-10-26T10:00:00+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

Nil Hilevich, leaned Dranko-Maisiuk, and other authors of the Dzeyaslou magazine met with its Vitebsk readers in the regional library. Barys Khamaida came to the meeting with a pile of independent editions planning to distribute them to the audience. Library director Alexander Siomkin was exasperated. Mr. Siomkin called for OMON police claiming that Khamaida had insulted him. However, he did not make a written statement. He explained to the police and the journalists who observed the conflict that the library is a state institution and should not be used for distribution of independent materials.

Barys Khamaida, who was not allowed to distribute ARCHE magazine, Belaruskiya Vedamastsi, and other independent editions, comments:

-- What can I say, if it is prohibited to distribute Belarusian-language literature in a library near the department of Belarusian literature! One can’t find these editions in kiosks or bookstores, where can one buy it? Where else can I distribute such a magazine as ARCHE? Nowhere!

The people who came to meet with the writers stayed to see if the police detain Barys Khamaida. In half an hour four more police officers arrived. Journalists with cameras formed a tight circle around Khamaida. The chief police officer evaluated the situation and ordered his colleagues to let Khamaida go, reports RFE/RL.