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US Diplomat Detained in Homel

2005 2005-08-24T10:00:00+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

On 23 August Homel police detained for half an hour Laila McMillan, an employee of the political department of US Embassy to Belarus, reported Radio Liberty. This happened in the private apartment in house No.35 in Lenin Avenue.
The meeting of the US diplomat with the public activists of Homel was to have taken place in the house of the Homel politician Viktar Karneenka at 52 Paleskaya St. But the police and the firefighters blocked the access to the house under the pretext of a WW2 bomb found in the neighboring house. That's why the meeting was transferred to the apartment owned by the Belarusian Social Democratic Party representative (Narodnaia Hramada) Iuras Zakharanka.
Under the pretext of combating illegal migration the police came to check the passports of those in the apartment. They even threatened to break the doors open unless the owners lets them inside. Even after Laila McMillan produced his diplomatic documents, the police did not allow the US citizen to leave the flat, requiring he show his passport.
The US diplomat jeep was thoroughly scrutinized not only by the police and people in plain clothes, but also by a TV crew from the local TV company.

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