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10 May, 2014 10:54   ▪  

Massive arrests of opposition activists start in Belarus

On the eve of the Men’s Ice Hockey World Championship to take place on May 9-25, numerous opposition activists were arrested. As of May 9, at least 28 political inmates are kept at prison isolators in Minsk

Preparations for the Men’s Ice Hockey World Championship have changed Minsk: roads have been fixed, new hotels built, signposts in English installed. What disappeared from the streets of Minsk, though, was the opposition. As a result, at least 28 political inmates were at the local detention centers (isolators) as of the morning of May 9.

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Most often, activists are arrested under faked identical charges, mostly misdemeanor or interference with the work of the police. Trials are unilateral, the consideration of administrative cases is technical, judges use presumption of trust to the testifying police officers while not taking into account evidence from the defense.

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At the meantime, the fans of the Russian ice hockey team who arrived for the championship wanted to hold a Russian March in Minsk on May 9 (Victory Day) but the Belarus police suggested to them that the march would be undesirable.

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