Minsk Authorities Ban Rally on 25 March on October Square
Today at 3 p.m. representatives of Minsk municipality met with organizers of the rally dedicated to the Freedom Day of March 25: Alexnder Milinkevich, Vincuk Viacorka, Anatol Liaukovich, and Ihar Shynkaryk. They discussed the conditions of holding the rally on March 25. The pro-democratic leaders were asking for permission to hold the Freedom Day in Minsk on October Square at 12 a.m.
The meeting with the municipality representatives was also attended by Minsk city prosecutor, BTV reporters, and the head of Minsk city police department. The authorities did not allow to hold the rally on October Square down town Minsk and suggested another place for the rally – Bangalor Square in the outskirts of the city. Minsk police chief demanded the action organizers sign a written warning that they would be charged under article about mass events of the Criminal Code, if something went wrong. However, the organizers refused to sign the document.
This way, all mass events on the October Square on March 25 are illegal.
Human rights defender Ales Bialiatski comments: “Despite the declarations of the Belarusian authorities that the country is a democracy, we see that the rights and freedoms of the citizens, guaranteed by the Belarusian Constitution, are completely ignored. Once again, March 25 is the day of an exam for the Belarusian authorities. And, once again, they don’t pass the exam. I am convinced more and more, that this totalitarian regime is not transformable”.