Hrodna: trials over detained Poles postponed again

2012 2012-06-05T23:01:50+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

The Leninski district court of Hrodna began hearing the case against Renata Dzemianchuk, the vice chairperson of the Union of Poles.

The trial was postponed until Thursday, 7 June, due to absence of some witnesses representing police. Three trials over detained picketers are expected to begin tomorrow, 6 June, RFE/RL reports.

Renata Dzemianchuk is accused of taking part in an unauthorized picket on 1 June. More than 20 picketers protesting against opening Russian-language classes in a Polish school were detained. Only one of them, Ihar Bantsar, was tried on Friday and received 13 days in custody. He was cruelly beaten by police during the detention.

Members of the Union of Poles of Belarus applied to the city authorities for holding a picket, but their application was declined. The only Polish-language secondary school in Hrodna was built on funds of the Polish government. The Hrodna authorities insist on opening Russian classes in the Polish school because other schools in the district are overcrowded.

Picketers expected trials yesterday, but they were not held.

Nine participants of the picket are to be tried. Policemen drew up reports against them and promised to phone on Monday. Some of the picketers came to the court voluntary, but were told their reports had not been received. The police department advised to wait, but said nothing about trial dates.