UN employees financed the Belarusian protests through ‘inappropriate payments’ by the Office for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the Investigative Committee reports with reference to the state-run news agency BelTA.
“Two employees of the UN office in Belarus, who were fully aware of the illicitness of their actions, developed and implemented an illegal scheme to pay for the services which lawyers provided to Belarusian citizens who are neither persons with disabilities nor victims of domestic violence,” the statement reads.
In fact, the point at issue is giving legal assistance to 23 people who suffered from police violence and repression.
When reached by Belsat, the UN office made the following comment on the accusations of sponsoring the protesters:
“The Office of the UN Resident Coordinator in Belarus is aware of the reports and concerns of the government of Belarus in connection with the legal aid program launched for some vulnerable groups. The UN liaises with the government of Belarus on this issue through relevant legal and diplomatic channels.”
According to them, the UN is focused on the continuation of work with Belarus and for the benefit of Belarus.
When meeting with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres in September, Belarusian Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makey said that some UN representatives in Belarus ‘had used the UN funds to support protesters’. He laid the blame for such actions on a number of Guterres’ aides who are ‘representatives of the EU member states’:
“Behind his back, they are doing nasty things. And if some materials are published at the UN’s initiative in the near future, we will tell you about how some UN representatives in Belarus used UN funds allocated for the disabled persons to back participants in the protest rallies,” he stressed in an interview with state-run Belarusian TV.