Policemen confess they beaten up participants of peaceful opposition rally

2009 2009-05-25T17:07:40+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

On May 21 a court trial over young activists detained during the peaceful rally dedicated to the anniversary of Chernobyl nuclear power station accident started in Vitsebsk.

Judge Valyantsina Kismeroshkina started the trial according to police records drawn up on April 26 against an activist of “European Belarus” campaign Kanstantsin Ivanou and an activist of “For Freedom” movement Alyaksei Pilevich. The young people are charged with alleged insubordination to police. Ivanou and Pilevich face a fine from 20 to 50 basic units (from 700 to 1 mln 750,000 Br), europeanbelarus.org informs.

In the report drawn up against Kanstantsin Ivanou, policemen wrote down that he was seizing them on uniform and tore off a shoulder strap. In reality, it couldn’t happen as according to the activist he was detained by people in plainclothes. And Ivanou’s jacket was torn.

During the court session a witness, policeman Matveeu was interrogated. He told that people in plainclothes who detained activists were chiefs of Vitsebsk police Shatovich, Hlushkou and Hajduk. He also confirmed that during the detentions physical force was used. Witnesses, including participanst of the rally, activists of the civil campaign “European Belarus” and other oppositional organisatoins were interrogated.

Kanstantsin Ivanou and Alyaksei Pilevich filed a request to demonstrate video footage made by police. In this way they plan to confirm their innocence.

On May 21 several dozens of “European Belarus” activists from Vitsebsk and Minsk and other organizations’ representatives came to the session of the court. The next session is to take place on June 11.