| POLITICS |
Freedom to Dashkevich! (Photo)
Zmitser Dashkevich’s Lawyer: “Scenario Tried out for Partnerstva Repeated”
Hundreds of people have come to the court of Kastrychnitski district of Minsk where a verdict to the young activist Zmitser Dashkevich was passed. The leader of the democratic forces of Belarus Alyaksandr Milinkevich, well-known politicians, diplomats, writers, public leaders and human rights activists came to express support to Dashkevich. The harsh sentence to Dashkevich, a year and a half of imprisonment for “activities on behalf of unregistered organizations” caused indignation and protest of people.
US Ambassador: “Verdict to Dashkevich is Politically Motivated”
“During the trial over Zmitser Dashkevich a scenario tried for Partnerstva activists has been repeated. There are very many analogies in principal points in the manner of investigation, in the secret character of investigation and the trial. The defence has used different arguments, including the one that the Article 193 of the Criminal Code contradicts Constitution, but nobody was going to listen to us. The system does not listen to any reasoning. I think this scenario is intended for many people,” the lawyer of Zmitser Dashkevich, Alyaksandr Halieu said, commenting on the verdict to the young leader, a year and a half in the minimum security colony for “activities on behalf of unregistered organization”.
Alyaksandr Milinkevich: “Dictator’s Regime is Hopeless”
Commenting on today’s ruling of the court of Kastrychnitski district of Minsk, a year and a half for the young activist Zmitser Dashkevich, the US Ambassador to Belarus Karen Stewart said that she is disappointed by it and condemns it. “We consider the verdict to Zmitser Dashkevich and the whole process to be politically motivated, aimed at preventing Zmitser Dashkevich from expressing his convictions in a non-violent way. As before, we would consider those who are violating human rights, responsible for this verdict, and call upon the Belarusian authorities to release Zmitser Dashkevich and those people who are imprisoned for political reasons, in particular Alyaksandr Kazulin, Mikalay Astrejka and Tsimafei Dranchuk,” American diplomat said in an interview to the BelaPAN.
“A cynical verdict to Zmitser Dashkevich is still another proof that Lukashenka’s regime is not going to play in the game of law. It is quite clear that the Constitution and freedom of associations are trampled upon. It is clear that the regime is afraid of the young people, and first of all, of organized youth. For the democratic countries it is yet another proof that the dictatorship is hopeless, it is not going to be transformed or to be democratized,”Belarusian Human Rights Activists to Address the UN Human Rights Committee
told the leader of the democratic forces of Belarus Alyaksandr Milinkevich, commenting on the verdict to Zmitser Dashkevich, who had been sentenced to a year and a half of minimum security colony for “activities on behalf of an unregistered organization”.
Andrzej Lisouski’s Clothes Seized during the Search
“The verdict to Zmitser Dashkevich is unjustifiably harsh. The judge has almost satisfied the demand of the prosecutor, and sentenced Dashkevich to a year and a half of imprisonment. It is clear why the court session was held behind the closed doors, it’s to hide that such harsh sentences are unjustifiable. I think that no proofs of Dashkevich’s crime could have been demonstrated to the public. And we see that a bad tendency is shaping, as “Partnerstva” activists had been condemned according to the same scheme. We, human rights watchdogs, are determined to get the UN Human Rights Committee to study those cases after all levels of the court would be passed here,” the Charter’97 press-center was told by Ales Byalatski, a well-known human rights activist, who commented on the verdict to the young activist Zmitser Dashkevich, who had been sentenced to 1.5 years in a minimum security colony for “activities on behalf of an unregistered organization”.
Protest Action in Front of the Court Continues
During the search in the apartment of the activist of the Union of Poles in Belarus Andrzej Lisouski investigators of Hrodna regional customs office seized clothes Mr. Lisouski had on on the day of detention at the Belarusian-Lithuanian border. The Charter’97 press-center was informed about that by the UPB activist Andrzej Poczobutt. As said by him, nothing else had been found in Lisouski’s apartment.
Office Equipment of Milinkevich’s Press-Service Worker Confiscated
More then 300 young activists are continuing to stand near the court of Kastrychnitski district of Minsk. Young people are holding portraits of the Young Front leader Zmitser Dashkevich, sentenced to 1.5 years of a minimum security colony for “activities on behalf of an unregistered organization” and scanning “Freedom to Dashkevich!” and “long Live Belarus!” White and red carnations, jeans and white-red-white ribbons are laid to the stairs of the court.
Andzelika Borys Summoned for Interrogation
During the search in the apartment of the mother of Yuliya Kotskaya, an employee of the democratic leader Alyaksandr Milinkevich’s press-service, office equipment, a few video cassettes and 6 packs of clean paper were confiscated. The Charter’97 press-center has been informed about that by Alyaksandr Milinkevich’s press secretary Pavel Mazhejka. However, P. Mazhejka hadn’t specified what kind of equipment had been confiscated in Kotskaya’s house. As said by him, the equipment had been packed into boxes.
Belarusians’ Halloween: Pumpkin with Moustache and Comb-over (Photo)
The leader of the Union of Poles in Belarus has been served summons for interrogation to Hrodna regional customs office tomorrow. She is to be questioned in the framework of a criminal case brought up for drugs trafficking through Belarusian-Lithuanian border. The Charter’97 press-center has been informed about that by the UPB activist Andrzej Poczobutt.
Search in Apartment of Union of Poles’ Activist
Minsk dwellers celebrated Halloween in different ways. Some people were wearing frightening costumes, some dressed angels’ costumes. However many passers-by yesterday were surprised to see in the center of Minsk a group of people carrying a pumpkin with a characteristic moustache and comb-over. Young people called the pumpkin “Patrick Ryhoravich” (Lukashenka’s patronymic) and carried it solemnly from Yakub Kolas Square to Kastrychnitskaya Square, and left it on the “Zero Kilometre Point”.
Hunger Strike of Solidarity with Alyaksandr Kazulin in Brest
At the moment a search is carried out in the apartment of Andrzej Lisouski, an activist of the Union of Poles in Belarus. The search is carried out by investigation officers of Hrodna regional customs office. The Charter’97 press-center has been informed about that by the UPB activist Andrzej Poczobutt.
KGB Officers Crack Down on Students
The chairperson of Brest city branch of the Belarusian Social Democratic Party (Hramada) Hanna Kanius has announced a hunger strike of solidarity with the former candidate for presidency, a political prisoner Alyaksandr Kazulin. “Our aim is to attract as much attention of Belarusian and international community as possible to the 5.5-year imprisonment of the former candidate for presidency A. Kazulin, who has announced an infinite hunger strike,” A. Kanius said. As we have informed, the former candidate for presidency Alyaksandr Kazulin and a former deputy Syarhei Skrabets have announced an indefinite hunger strike protesting against total lawlessness in Belarus and with the aim to attract attention of the UN Security Council to the situation in Belarus.
Building of New Life Church Daubed with Black Paint
“On October 31, 2006 two KGB officers came to the vocational school of electronics. One of them presented himself as Dzyanis Uladzimiravich. Officers started to ask me about my political views, about my attitude to the regime, about “Za svabodu” movement and my implication in this movement,” a member of the organization the Belarusian Popular Front Youth Anastasiya Aleksandrovich says.
Solidarity Action with Dashkevich in Hrodna (Photo)
Today in the night the unknown smeared in black paint the building of Minsk Protestant church “New Life”. Under a Bible quote on the façade of the building hooligans wrote in black paint: “No to totalitarian sects!”
Rally in Support of Zmitser Dashkevich is Salihorsk (Photo)
On Tuesday Hrodna young activists held a rally of solidarity with the leader of the Young Front Zmitser Dashkevich. About a dozen of young people made a line near Savetskaya Square in Hrodna with portraits of the leader of the Young Front. They demanded to release Zmitser Dashkevich, the verdict to whom is to be passed today in the court of Kastrychnitski district of Minsk.
Policemen Smashed Door in Yuliya Kotskaya’s House
On October 31 in the evening a solidarity action with the young leader Zmitser Dashkevich was staged in Salihorsk. Young people gathered at 8 p.m. in the central square of the city. They were holding portraits of Dashkevich in their hands.
OSCE Ambassador: “Kazulin Looks Physically Weak”
Today Hrodna policemen and people in mufti have carried out a search in the house where a worker of the press service of the democratic forces leader Alyaksandr Milinkevich is registered. Nothing illegal has been found in the apartment of Yuliya Kotskaya, and then policemen tried to break in the apartment of her mother. The Chareter’97 press-center has been informed about that by the press secretary of the leader of the democratic forces Pavel Mazhejka.
Kazulin Prohibited to Meet with Lawyer
The head of the OSCE bureau in Minsk Oke Peterson has visited a former presidential candidate, a political prisoner Alyaksandr Kazulin in the penal colony No. 3 in Vitsebsk. The political prisoner started a hunger strike on October 20, protesting against total lawlessness in Belarus and with the aim to attract attention of the UN Security Council to the situation in Belarus. After the visit Ambassador Peterson said that Kazulin is cheerful, though looks physically enfeebled.
A lawyer Ihar Rynkevich has been banned meeting with the former candidate for presidency, a political prisoner Alyaksandr Kazulin for the whole term of his hunger strike. As said by Ihar Rynkevich, it is “a personal decision” of the director of the colony “Vitsba-3” Vital Agnistsikau. “He told to me that he is responsible for lives of all prisoners. He thinks that a meeting with me would weaken Kazulin,” the lawyer said. The former candidate for presidency Alyaksandr Kazulin and a former deputy Syarhei Skrabets have announced an indefinite hunger strike in the colony protesting against total lawlessness in the country and with the aim to attract attention of the UN Security Council to the situation in Belarus.