Foreigners taken to a forest near Kurapaty, beaten and threatened
The victims, Azerbaijan, Tajik and Armenian nationals, reported about mass violence by men in civilian clothes, who seized, beat and intimidated them.
As stated to Radio “Liberty” by individual entrepreneur, representative of the movement "For Free Development of Business" Aliaksandr Taustyka, the incident took place at the Minsk market “ExpoBel” between 9 and 10 a.m. on 8 November.
"About 40 unidentified plainclothes on two buses arrived. They called themselves the police, but did not present their documents. They split into pairs and approached each stall at which foreign nationals (Azerbaijanians, Armenians, Tajiks and others) were working. Those who didn't show documents giving them the right to work were taken to the bus. In the buses they were taken to the forest near the mass grave in Kurapaty, where they were intimidated and beaten. In particular, they were smothered with their hoods, hit in the kidneys, were forced to squat. Their phone numbers were taken, too.
Ales Taustyka wasn't an eyewitness of the incident. The victims of the assault are afraid of retaliation and therefore refuse to tell their surname. They also abstained from writing any applications to the prosecutor's office, being afraid of deportation.
According to Mr. Taustyka, there are about 40 victims of the raid. They state that the main aim of the beating was to intimidate them and prevent the incidents similar to Biryulovo near Moscow.
“There is no information about it anywhere. I asked the head of the Criminal Investigation Department and the head of the police. They say they haven't received any appeals on this matter,” said to RFE/RL Tatsiana Zaloha, press-secretary of the Minsk District Police Department.