Mahiliou police disrupt action “For Decent Roads”

2014 2014-03-13T22:50:20+0300 2014-03-13T22:50:20+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

The organizer of the spring action of motorists Illia Palonnikau was given administrative charges, the police took away two laptops during the examination of his apartment.

Mr. Palonnikau organized the event through a group in the Russian social network “Vkontakte”. He intended to hold the action in April 2014.

March 6, he distributed stickers "Mahiliou is a city without roads" together with other activists. All volunteers could come to him and receive such stickers. The police also came there.

"When just some 3-5 stickers were left, we were approached by the police, who started asking what was going on. Then they put down our passport data and proposed me to come to the DPD with them. There they drew up a report for holding an unauthorized mass event. Then they drove me home, examined my apartment and took away two laptops for examination,” says Illia.

The guy said that in a private conversation the police reported that it was not the best time for such actions, and it would be better if it was held after the end of the electoral campaign.

Human rights activist Barys Bukhel says that law enforcement agencies have started punishing organizers of protest actions preventively, which is contrary to the Constitution and violates civil rights.

"Earlier, preventive punishment could be used oonly for the intent to commit a felony. However, the legislation has become increasingly repressive, and activists are punished even for attempts to conduct any actions calling people to be active citizens," said Barys Bukhel.

Bear in mind that the first action “For Decent Roads” took place in spring 2013 in Mahiliou. Iit was attended by about a dozen cars. Participants of the rally drove in a column along Mahiliou streets under a vigilant supervision of the traffic police. They installed a symbolic money box near the sports comples "Olympian" and threw there symbolic sums of money for repair of the roads in Mahiliou.

It should be noted that according to experts, if the road repairs continue at the present pace, it will take about 300 years to bring all Mahiliou roads in order.