2010 13/09

Today in Homiel Central district Court a session of “Maladaya Belarus” representative Ivan Zaitsev took place. He was arrested by militia on Saturday night of September 11 during Town Day celebration.

Judge Maryna Damnienka released the activist from custody till September 20 on account of necessity to question witnesses from militia.

The official version of administrative accusation presented in reports is disorderly conduct and insubordination to militia officers. But the activist states that he was arrested for national flag which he lifted up during the festive concert.

Ivan Zaitsau didn’t accept guilt in court and explained that when he lifted white-red-white flag three unknown persons rushed to him, knocked him down and started beating him to the stomach. He really resisted, but he didn’t know that people who had attacked him were militia officers.


-Only after they had taken me to the dressing room of Ice Arena and laid me down to the floor in handcuffs I understood that they were representatives of militia. A protocol was drawn against me and I was taken to the pretrial detention center. I spent all weekend there.

-I didn’t use coarse language but I resisted people in private clothes, which is a normal reaction of every person attacked by unknown people in private clothes, – said the activist.

Judge M.Damnienka took a week-long break to summon militia officers to appear as witnesses and decreed to release Zaitsau from custody and issued request for summons on September 20.

Human right activist Leanid Sudalenka who was present in court thought that the judge wouldn’t be able to judge any other punishment but administrative arrest because the activist had already spent two days in the pretrial detention centre.

L.Sudalenka: – administrative liability for disorderly conduct according to article 17.1 of Administrative Code is up to 15 days of arrest. The fact that Zaitsau was kept in the pretrial detention centre for two days leaves out administrative fine and pushes the judge to condemn the activist to an arrest term not less than he had already spent.

-I think the court will act that way – it will condemn the activist to the term he had already spent in the pretrial detention centre, – states human right activist.

Human right defender also stated that in the given case we can speak about violation of activist’s right of expression.

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