Homel: people in mufti shoot electoral picket on video

2010 2010-04-14T17:38:47+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

Yauhen Yakavenka and Kastus Zhukouski, members of the organizing committee of the Belarusian Christian Democracy Party, are candidates for deputies of the Homel regional council. They have been holding electoral pickets in Homel for several days already. Mr. Zhukouiski held his first picket near the Festyvalny Culture Palace, without any incidents. The following day Zhukouski and Yakavenka started using a loudspeaker in their agitation work, which attracted a scrupulous attention of the local police. On 9 April policemen and people in mufti approached the picket near the culture palace and started shooting the action on video.

'I consider it as psychological pressurization, that's why I had to call the police in order to protect my constitutional rights,' explained Mr. Zhukouski. As a result, some more policemen arrived to the place, including the local police inspector to whom the activist complained about the unlawful videoing. 'That's when the Deputy Chairperson of the Savetski district police department of Homel, Yarutsich, intervened. He said that the video was shot on his order, and the reason was none of our business,' pointed Mr. Zhukouski.

The activists held a picket in support of candidate Yakavenka in the afternoon near the Culture Palace of the Deaf Vipro. They were approached by a policeman who put down their passport data and told Mr. Yakavenka that the loudspeaker disturbed the local dwellers and he had already received complaints about it. Then two youngsters came up. 'They started clinging to us, trying to provoke an argument. 'You are such a young candidate, who can you convince? Try convincing us in anything first,' they said. They behaved boldly and tried to start a quarrel. However, I did my best to evade from all this. As a result, they had to go away,' pointed Yakavenka.

The BCD activists intend to continue holding electoral pickets despite any obstacles.

Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections