Zhlobin: Valery Rybchanka sentenced to 14 days of arrest
Valery Rybchanka, chairman of the Zhlobin branch of
the Belarusian Leftist Party “Fair World”, coordinator of the organizing
committee of the People's Assembly in Zhobin, was sentenced to 14 days of
arrest on 31 October by Mikalai Bakunou, Judge of the Zhlobin District Court.
The verdict was issued despite the fact that, as it follows from the minutes of the organizing committee's sittings, presented by the defendant, the assembly was held in line with the Law “On National and Local Assemblies”. However, the judge found Rybchanka guilty of holding an unauthorized mass event.
According to Marat Afanas'yeu, former deputy of the Supreme Soviet, police witnesses were giving addle testimonies and often called the action an assembly, not an “unauthorized mass event”, as it was stated in the police report.
Valery Rybchanka stated that the authorities persecuted organizers of the People's Assembly as they were afraid of questions about daily issues, such as the rapid growth of prices on foodstuffs, other goods, fuel and public utilities. The authorities use arrests and fines in order to create a fearful atmosphere in the society and prevent real mass actions for the protection of a worthy life.