News for 18 May 2011

18.05.2011 Police disrupts action against homophobia in Minsk

Activists of LGBT movement planned to conduct this action together with "Young Assembly" activists in Minsk.

18.05.2011 Anarchist Mikalaj Dziadok claims there was pressure from investigators

Activists of the anarchist movement Maxim Vetkin and Yauhen Selivonchyk admit guilt partly. Alinevich, Dziadok and Frantskevich plead not guity.

18.05.2011 No punishment for a broken arm

Yan Lahvinovich, who brutally beaten by police on the Square, filed a complaint to a prosecutor’s office in January asking to open a criminal case over his beating.

Analytical review of the trial of Pavel Seviarynets, Siarhei Martseleu and Iryna Khalip

18.05.2011 Analytical review of the trial of Pavel Seviarynets, Siarhei Martseleu and Iryna Khalip

Conclusions: - The trial failed to provide any evidence of an offence under Par. 1 Art. 342 of the Criminal Code, i.e. direct involvement in gross violation of the public order during the protest, as well as any criminal intent to stage the alleged actions by the defendants. Nor did the trial provide any evidence of the damage allegedly inflicted by the defendants to any institutions or enterprises. In reality, none of the institutions or enterprises mentioned in the case file initiated legal proceedings to recover the reported damage in court. - No evidence of the defendants’ involvement in any unlawful actions committed on 19 December 2010 in Nezalezhnastsi Square was provided. - Defendants Seviarynets, Martseleu and Khalip, while in custody in the KGB pre-trial prison, were not provided with the sufficient amount of meetings with their lawyers during the preliminary investigation into the case. We consider the fact to be an outrage against their right to legal protection, guaranteed by Art. 62 of the Belarusian Constitution, together with a number of provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedures. Seviarynets’s and Khalip’s lawyers were dismissed during the preliminary investigation stage, having faced harassment by the Ministry of Justice, and were eventually disbarred. - The public media (the Sovetskaya Belorussia newspaper, state-run TV channels) repeatedly named the defendants organizers of the riot outside the House of Government long before the start of the trial, violating the defendants’ presumption of innocence. - The publication of the preliminary investigation materials before its termination, and the announcement of the defendants’ guilt in the Sovetskaya Belorussia were made by order of the President, which is an evidence of the political nature of the criminal case and emphasizes the accusatory essence of both the preliminary investigation and the trial.

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