Two Brest residents detained for protesting, Russian special services helped

Belarus MIA reports that law enforcement officers detained participants of the August protests in Brest on the border with Lithuania.

Special operation in the Iuye district was carried out in the evening on June 4 by soldiers of the anti-crime unit and Hrodna police, and employees of the Lida border group. As a result, two residents of Brest (ages 21 and 27) were detained at the border crossing point “Rudzeushchyna.” They were internationally wanted on charges of “rioting.”

“Two Brest residents hid from the investigation on the territory of the Russian Federation. Russian law enforcement agencies reported that the wanted persons intend to transit illegally through the territory of Belarus to the EU countries in June,” said the head of the Brest Department of anti-crime unit Alyaksandr Laurukovich.

In the video, published by the Interior Ministry’s press service, Brest detainees say they wanted to cross the border to Lithuania to live and work there.

According to human rights activists, Belarus has seen the most massive repression since the summer of 2020. The Investigative Committee claims that more than 2,400 criminal cases related to protests have been opened since August. The Prosecutor General’s Office claims that more than 3,000 such “crimes” have been registered during this period. However, the exact number of politically motivated criminal cases remains unknown.

As many as 470 people were recognized as political prisoners on June 5. In addition, thousands of protesters across the country were victims of targeted torture, and more than 33,000 people were held in administrative detention. According to various estimates, between 4 and 15 people died due to the actions of the security forces. However, no one has been prosecuted for torture or murder.