Babruisk hunger-strikers questioned by police

2014 2014-11-12T22:21:42+0300 2014-11-12T22:21:42+0300 en

As reported to BelaPAN by Aliaksandr Varankin, the activists of the Belarusian Independent Trade Union, having gone on a hunger strike because of their discharge from Babruisk plant of tractor details and aggregates, were questioned at the police office.

On Tuesday Siarhei Rudzko, Police Lieutenant Colonel, had a conversation with each of four participants of the strike. Last week he expelled the workers from the Babruisk City Executive Committee. “He asked the reasons for this strike. We responded that we had on hunger strike because of the unlawful dismissal. We want the authorities not to dismiss people for membership in the Belarusian Independent Trade Union”, explained Mr. Varankin.

According to Varankin, police officers were trying to convince the workers that Mikalai Kavalkou, the chairman of the trade union organization at the plant, had incited them to start the hunger strike. “They tried to accuse Kavalkou of incitement to the strike. I said that it was the workers’ own decision”, emphasized Aliaksandr Varankin.

According to him, the hunger strike participants weren't threatened, but were told they could be fined up to 4.5 million of Belarusian roubles for unauthorized strike.

On November 13, each of the four questioned workers is summoned to the police department, for drawing up violation reports. At 1 am. On November 12, Chairman of the Babruisk City Executive Committee AndreiKavalenka met with the participants of the hunger strike. However, the meeting yielded no results.

Let us remind that on November 5 MikalaiZhybul, AlehShauchenka, AliaksandrVarankin and AliaksandrHramyka have gone on hunger strike at the Babruisk City Council, claiming to satisfy their constitutional right to work. They had to leave the building twice o n demand of the police and civil servant. On November 6, four of the strikers continued standing at the entrance to the plant of tractor details and aggregates. They stopped the hunger-strike for the weekend, but continued it on November 10. That day the participants were taken to the police department where they were warned in oral form about possible punishment for the unauthorized strike, reports BelaPAN.

Two more plant workers joined the action. Later one of them, HenadzLabachou, had to give up for medical reasons. On November 11 SviatlanaHrytsenka, an employee of the regional library, joined the strike to express solidarity with the dismissed workers.