Case dropped: Hrodna court not to punish owner of toy dwarf with white-red-white flag

‘Picketing’ dwarf with white-red-white flag. Photo:

The hearing of the case of ‘one-man picketing’ with the participation of a toy dwarf was resumed in a Hrodna court on Friday morning.

In the run-up to the New Year festivities, the Yarash family decorated their flat in the city of Hrodna with dolls and toys; one of them – a dwarf holding a small white-red-white flag – was placed under the New Year tree. However, while doing the room, someone put the toy on the windowsill.

After a while, pro-government activist Volha Bondarava who was walking past the block of flats noticed the dwarf with a flag, took a photo of it, and called the police. As a result, a protocol was drawn upon family man Yury Yarash for ‘holding an unauthorised mass event’ (Article 23.34 of the old version of the Code of Administrative Offences).

Tatsyana and Yury Yarash. Photo: Belsat

Kastrychnitski district court of Hrodna started considering ‘the toy’s picketing’ on October, 8. However, the court send the case back for revision.

Today judge Valery Shpak has dismissed the case due to the expiration of the alleged violation’s limitation period.

About a dozen Hrodna residents came to show support the for the Yarash family. Yury Yarash was wearing a T-shirt with the image of the same dwarf and the inscription ‘I Am the Master of the Dwarf. In turn, Ms Bondarava, who is a member of the so-called Infaspetsnaz (pro-Lukashenka association which is known to scout around cities and towns in search of ‘prohibited’ white-red-white symbols) failed to appear in court and give testimony.