Policemen again visited “absolutely free” Khalip after Lukashenka's statement.
Under the court decision of May 16, 2011, the journalist must be at home from 10 p.m. till 6 a.m.
Alyaksandr Lukashenka said at a press conference for the media that Novaya Gazeta journalist Iryna Khalip, former presidential candidate Andrei Sannikov's wife who was given a 2-year suspended sentence for the events on December 19, was free and could go wherever she wanted. He said she didn't go anywhere because she didn't want it, because she is considered to be a martyr in Belarus, but nobody needs her abroad.
“I asked they why the came,” Iryna Khalip wrote on her Facebook account. “Didn't you hear that Lukashenka said I was free and could go wherever I wanted.
The policemen scratched their heads and answered: 'Aha, so it is you who call us here every evening?'”
They said they didn't know about any changes in Iryna Khalip's status after Lukashenka's remarks.
The police appeared again on the evening of January 16.
“Policemen began to visit me every day after Lukashenka's statement. I regard this as a psychological attack. As experience shows, pressure on me only grows after Lukashenka's words that I am free. It proves that they are not going to overturn the illegal sentence,” the journalist told charter97.org.
It should be reminded that Iryna Khalip was detained on the way from Independence Square and thrown into KGB jail on the presidential elections day, December 19, 2010. The preliminary investigation department of Minsk's police initiated a criminal case against Iryna and charged her with violating parts 1 and 2 of article 293 of the Criminal Code (mass disorders).
Khalip's family face unprecedented pressure when she was in the KGB jail. The authorities made an attempt to sent her 3-year-old son Danik Sannikov to an orphanage.
On January 29, 2011, she was released on her own recognizance and put under house arrest.
On April 4, 2011, the charge against her was changed. She was accused of committing actions that violate public order (article 342).
On May 16, 2011, Minsk's Zavadski district court gave Iryna a 2-year suspended sentence.
A photo from the archive