Aliaksandr Alesin remains suspect in espionage case

2015 2015-09-08T11:28:00+0300 2015-09-08T11:28:00+0300 en
Aliaksandr Alesin. Photo by RFE/RL

Aliaksandr Alesin. Photo by RFE/RL

Despite the release of political prisoners, a criminal case against a famous Belarusian journalist hasn't been closed. He is advised to wait for Lukashenka's decree.

Famous Belarusian journalist Aliaksandr Alesin still remains a suspect in a criminal case over cooperation with foreign secret services. The case was launched by the KGB last December.

“I haven't been involved in investigative activities for a long time. I hoped the charges will be dropped in connection with the recent release of political prisoners. I have to reject a large number of important international meetings due to the travel restrictions imposed on me. Investigators advise me wait for Lukashenka's decree.

The KGB says the “house of representatives” prepared amendments to the Criminal Code, under which cooperation with foreign secret services that didn't inflict damage to the state won't be considered to be a crime. If the amendments are approved by Lukashenka, investigators promise to close the case,” Aliaksandr Alesin told the press service of the Belarusian Association of Journalists (BAJ).

Aliaksandr Alesin, a military expert and observer of Belorusy i Rynok newspaper, was detained by the Belarusian secret services on November 25, 2014. The news appeared only in early December, but the KGB didn't inform about the reasons for the detention and whereabouts of the journalist. It was later revealed that he was held in the KGB jail.

Alesin's family reported on December 8 that he was charged with treason (article 356 of the Criminal Code) and establishing contacts with security services or intelligence services of a foreign state (article 356-1).

Alesin was released on his own recognizance on December 10. The journalist told colleagues that the treason charge was dropped. He is now charged only with cooperating with foreign secret services.