Detentions in Brest: police violate ruling of deputy minister of information

2009 2009-07-08T17:09:49+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

The detained participants of a peaceful picket in the memory of the missing cameraman Zmitser Zavadski spent some hours at the police department where printed materials were seized.

The human rights activist Raman Kisliak and the Young Front activist Andrei Sharenda were detained at 5:40 p.m. near Maskouski district executive committee for handing out materials about the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance at 5:15 p.m., the BelaPAN reports.

The activists were guarded to the administration building and then to Maskouski district police department of Minsk, where they wrote explanations and were seized 59 copies of the printed materials. They were set free at 8:00 p.m.

‘We are going to appeal against this arbitrary detention’, the human rights activist said. ‘Moreover, the examination of two similar incidents in Brest on 11 and 16 June shows that actions of democratic forces’ representatives don’t have elements of administrative offence’.

‘The police hinder us to spread information. We handed out only 21 copies,’ Mr. Kisliak said.

Now the detained activists are going to demand that the Chief police department of Brest oblast executive committee instructed the policemen what can and what cannot be considered as violation of the law on information. Bear in mind, that distribution of the brochure with the text of the Convention was found legal by the deputy minister of information Laptsionak as early as 23 June 2009.

The cameraman of ORT TV channel Zmitser Zavadski disappeared on 7 July 2000 under unclear circumstances on his way to Minsk-2 airport.

Officially, the kidnapping of Zmitser Zavadski is considered to be solved. The officers of Almaz special squad of the Ministry of Internal Affairs Valer Ihnatovich and Maxim Malik (sentenced to life imprisonment), former cadet of the Police Academy Aliaksei Huz (got 25 years in prison), and Siarhei Savushkin, who had three previous convictions (sentenced to 12 years in prison) were found guilty in this crime.

All judgments were delivered behind closed doors. No proofs of their involvement in kidnapping of Zmitser Zavadski were presented to the public. None of the accused pleaded guilty. The body of the disappeared journalist has not been found.