Zmitser Khvedaruk: ‘They Hit Me in the Head with Knuckledusters’
Zmitser Khvedaruk feels a little better: he has a clear sight and speaks, can move his arms and legs, but still cannot stand and walk. ‘Today I was taken for an X-ray on a wheelchair’, said Zmitser, ‘I cannot even stand up because of acute headaches’.
According to Zmitser, everything happened very quickly. We were pushed out to Kupala alley. They pressed everybody further, to the stairs. I was torn out of the crowd and thrown behind the police cordon. After several hard blows in the head I fell on the ground. Then they started hitting me in the head with knuckledusters - they hit me about fifteen times and then walked over me. I lost consciousness and then don’t remember almost anything. I have come to my senses only today, but my head aches terribly.’
Today Zmitser was given a new diagnosis: numerous bruises and scratches, a light cranial trauma and brain concussion. He will spend in the hospital at least 10 days. It is quite surprising that yesterday the diagnosis also mentioned an injury of the abdominal tissues and a middle cranial trauma. ‘We will try to get an independent medical examination, may be with the assistance of our American friends’, said the co-chairman of the Belarusian Christian Democracy and a coordinator of the For Freedom movement Vital Rymasheuski, ‘because the diagnosis is evidently changed to hide the real circumstances and consequences of the beating’.
Today a complaint to the prosecutor’s office was composed. Zmitser signed it. He also said that at 5 a.m. a policeman came to his ward and ordered to write a complaint, but Zmitser refused referring to his bad health.
Answering the questions why it was him who was grabbed by the riot police, Khvedaruk answered that after his beating, the police told to other action participants something like: ‘Take away your comrade, it was a good trip to America for him’. ‘I think that my beating is connected to my trip to the US, the more that the police also beat Anatol Liabedzka, who was there together with us.’
Activists of the Young Front keep a twenty-four hour watch near Zmitser Khvedaruk. No wonder, because today the Belarusian state TV has tried to burst into his ward, but did not manage to do it because of the vigilant guards.
At present Zmitser is kept in clinical hospital #9 of Minsk, in the traumatic department, ward 314. Visits are allowed at 5-7p.m. Today he has been visited by other Young Front activists, the US ambassador Karen Stuart, the ambassador of Slovakia Lubomir Rehak, a former political prisoner Siarhei Skrabets, the co-chairmen of the Belarusian Christian Democracy Pavel Seviarynets and Aliaksei Shein, Dzianis Sadouski, Liudmila Hraznova and Ela Haretskaya.