Vitsebsk: female agitators are detained and insulted
On 8 December the guards
of the shopping center Evicom detained
the electioneering agent of Vital Rymasheuski, Tatsiana Seviarynets (pictured)
for handing out electoral leaflets of the candidate. On 9 December Alena
Famina, an electioneering agent of the presidential candidate Dzmitry Us, was
removed from the building of Vitsebsk
with the use of physical force.
Alena Famina came to the university at about 8 a.m. in order to hand out invitations to an electoral meeting of Dzmitry Us and Mikalai Statkevich. The university guards immediately approached her and stated that she was violating the law. Alena proposed them to call the police in order to discriminate who was right in this situation.
’Then there came a man who introduced himself as the rector Aliaksandr Saladkou and started pushing me in the back’, says Alena Famina. ‘I was exasperated: how can so ill-bred people educate future teachers? The man stared grabbing my bag and the leaflets. Eventually, a guard came again, said that there was a rector’s order not to allow handing out any leaflets to students and told Alena to go away from the building. She turned her back on the university and went forward, handing out the leaflets on the way, whereas he was going behind her and shouted: ‘Don’t take the leaflets!’
The incident took place in front of the eyes of students, which causes an especial indignation of Alena Famina.
Tatsiana Seviarynets, an electioneering agent of Vital Rymasheuski, was detained at the largest shopping center of Vitsebsk, Evicom. Candidate Rymasheuski had come there before, but hadn’t been allowed to hold an electoral meeting. That’s why members of his electoral team decided to hand out leaflets to the vendors and customers. However, the guards ran up to them and stated that they had no right to be there. Mrs. Seviarynets didn’t agree to it, and was detained by them, ‘till the arrival of the police’.
However, other activists of the electoral team started phoning to the Central Election Commission, which explained the guards that they had no right to interfere with canvassing. Tatsiana Seviarynets was released after which the agitators continued handing out Rymasheuski’s leaflets without any obstacles.
Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections