An orphan boy committed suicide after being interrogated; lawyers are not allowed to visit Raman Pratasevich and Safia Sapega; security forces are holding hostage a relative of an escaped journalist
26 May 2021 | Voice of Belarus
An orphan boy committed suicide after being interrogated
In Minsk, 17-year-old (according to the Investigative Committee, 18-year-old) Dzmitry Stakhouski, who was involved in a criminal case on mass riots during the protests in August 2020, committed suicide. On the afternoon of 25 May, a few hours before his death, Stakhouski was interrogated in this case.
In his suicide note, he blamed the Investigative Committee for his death and complained about the pressure the security forces put on him which became the reason for his decision to commit this “terrible act”. According to the testimony of his friends, the deceased participated in rallies, but did nothing illegal, was a very good kind person, and earned good money working in IT.
Lawyers are not allowed to visit Raman Pratasevich and Safia Sapega
Raman Pratasevich’s lawyer, Inesa Alenskaya, has been trying to get to her client for the second day in a row. But she is not allowed in the pre-trial detention center, although the right to defense is guaranteed by the Constitution (Art. 62) and cannot be limited by the investigating authorities or the administration of the detention center. At first, the investigator did not give permission. But today it turned out that Pratasevich was not in detention center No. 1, although a video of Raman claiming he was there, was published by one of the pro-government Telegram channels.
Pratasevich’s colleague, a founder of the opposition channel Nexta, Stsiapan Putsila, told the BBC that “Raman is in greater danger than other political prisoners in Belarus. He is Lukashenko’s personal enemy”.
Safia Sapega’s lawyer has also been unable to meet with her client today. There will be another attempt tomorrow.
The security forces are holding hostage a relative of an escaped journalist
Aryna Malinouskaya, the host of the program “Honestly speaking” of the TV channel Belsat, left Belarus after the security forces detained the guests of one of her program’s episodes and other journalists of the TV channel Belsat. After Malinouskaya left Belarus, the investigator called her from her sister’s husband phone and said that he had been detained and the journalist’s grandparents could soon be detained. The security official said that her relatives would be released only after Malinouskaya herself came to the police station. The fact of the detention was confirmed by her brother- in- law, Valyantsin Kucharenka. He pointed out that he was constantly asked when she would be able to come and that “they won’t leave us alone, neither the parents nor the family.” Thus, the authorities are demanding for Aryna to return. She has not had any communication with her relatives so far.
EASA recommends all airlines to avoid the airspace over Belarus
The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) recommends that aviation operators fly around Belarus and enter its airspace only in extreme cases in order “to ensure safety in unforeseen circumstances”. EASA notes that the circumstances surrounding the incident with the Ryanair aircraft on 23 May 2021 “raise serious doubts about Belarus’ compliance with international civil aviation rules”.