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Mass searches among human rights activists in Belarus

Source : 112 Ukraine

EU threatens with consequences
16:28, 15 July 2021

Open source

Belarusian law enforcers conducted mass searches in offices of human rights organizations and activists. Specifically, the police searched the officer of lawyer Volodymyr Labkovich and deputy head of Vesna human rights centre Valentin Stefanovich. 

DW cited Stefanovich's wife Alina who said that the search was conducted by workers of the Department of Financial Investigations of the Committee of Government Control. The search order contained provisions about organization of actions that breach civilian order, and tax evasion. Stefanovich had his computers and Belarusian opposition flags seized. The law enforcers took him in for 72 hours.

In Minsk, the police searched the apartment of Serhiy Sys, the Vesna activist. Then, they detained him as well. His fellow activists Yuriy Hubarevich and Katerina Sinyuk claimed that offices of local human rights organizations were searched, too.

Related: Belarus official organizations may be involved in human trafficking, - Lithuanian MFA

Besides, workers of the Committee of Government Control searched Grodno-based human rights activist Viktor Sazonov, Brest-based lawyer Kirill Kofanov and Igor Kazmerchak, the editor of orsha.eu outlet. Kazmerchak was detained.

The EU already responded to that action. Peter Stano, the EU representative on Foreign Affairs and Security Policy left a message on his Twitter, saying that Lukashenko's regime is "afraid of all independent votes", and is now conducting a decisive attack to make them silent. 

Related: Unprecedented raids on human rights defenders in Belarus

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