2009 17/09

The human rights organization “Östgruppen” made a statement in connection with the 10th anniversary of the disappearance of opponents of Lukashenka’s regime.

“Ten years ago Viktar Hanchar and Anatol Krasouski have been kidnapped in the Belarusian capital and killed. Officially, the perpetrators of the crime have not yet been found, but an independent investigation revealed: it is very likely that the people of Aliaksandr Lukashenka’s entourage are responsible for that,”- said in a statement.

“The international community should remember the victims of terrible crimes and demands a serious criminal investigation in order the perpetrators be brought to justice”, – said chairman of “Östgruppen”, Mr. Martin Uggla.

According to the statements of Swedish human right defenders, “the matter concerns political killings, in which the existing regime is suspected. And therefore, as a serious and objective criminal investigation was not carried out, the question can not be removed from the agenda.”

First Vice-Speaker of the Supreme Council of Belarus of the 13th convocation, chairman of the Central Election Commission, Mr. Viktar Hanchar, and his friend, businessman Anatol Krasouski disappeared in Minsk on 16 September 1999.

Earlier, also in 1999, Yury Zakharanka, the former head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs who joined the opposition, disappeared. In 2000, Zmitser Zavadski, the cameraman of ORT TV channel, also disappeared.

The need to clarify the fate of disappeared Belarusian oppositionists is constantly claimed by the international community. The resolutions of the UN Commission on Human Rights, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and OSCE demand to reveal the truth of their disappearance.

A number of high Belarusian officials, including the ex-Minister of Internal Affairs, Uladzimir Naumau, the former Secretary of Security Council, Viktar Sheiman, the former director of Ministry of Internal Affairs, Yury Sivakou and the ex-commander of the SWAT, Zmitser Paulichenka, are banned to enter the EU and U.S. because of the suspicion of their involvement in kidnapping of oppositionists.

Source: Charter’97.

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