Neither journalists nor politicians allowed at trial of bloggers in Mahiliou

On February 11, a Mahiliou court began the trial against Brest bloggers Syarhei Pyatrukhin and Alyaksandr Kabanau. Journalists and friends of the bloggers were not allowed into the courtroom, a correspondent of Belsat reports.

Brest blogger Syarhei Pyatrukhin is charged under Article 342 (“organization or preparation of mass riots”), Article 369 (“insulting a public officer”) and Article 391 (“insulting a judge”) of the Criminal Code. On February 11th , the case hearing started in Kastrychnitski court of Mahiliou. But independent journalists and all those who came to support the bloggers were not allowed into the courtroom without any explanation.

No one was allowed into the courtroom where Pyatrukhin’s trial will be held. Photo: Belsat

Anatol Lyabedzka and Mikalai Kazlou came to the trial from Minsk.

As a result, after people we denied access to the courtroom, they wrote complaints.

The same situation repeated after a lunch break. Tsimur Pakhomenka and Pavel Basharymau, employees of Leninski District Police Department of Mahiliou, did not let people into the hall. But this time the policemen said that allegedly there were no free seats.

Human rights activists believe that the charges are linked with the activities of Pyatrukhin and Kabanau as video bloggers. They exposed corruption and spoke out about social-environmental problems, including the battery plant.