17 years ago Viktar Hanchar, ex-Chairman of the Central Election Commission, and businessman Anatol Krasouski disappeared.
In 1998 Viktar Hanchar led an alternative Elections Committee during the presidential elections of 1999, organised by the opposition as a protest against Lukashenka’s constitutional reforms, which posed a threat to the first and still the only Belarusian President’s autoritarian power. Anatol Krasouski provided financial backing to the opposition movement.
On September 16, 1999 Viktar Hanchar and Anatol Krasouski left a bathhouse in Minsk. They were seen in Fabrychnaya Street at about 22:35 last. Later, windscreen fragments of Krasouski’s car were found there. Moreover, blood was identified on the glass fragments. A genomic examination defined with a probability of 99.9998% that it belonged to Hanchar.
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Moreover, later Police General Mikalai Lapatsik made a classified report to the Interior Minister:
“The catch and further elimination of Zakharanka [opposition politician who disappeared before] was carried out by a group of soldiers led by Paulichenka (the commander of military unit 3214). A similar operation was carried out byPaulichenka and his group on 16.09.1999 to catch and kill Hanchar and Krasouski. The planned place of burial is a special plot on Paunochnya Cemetery.”
Former chief of the Minsk detention facility No 1 Aleh Alkayeu stated that oppositionists Hanchar, Krasouski, and Zakharanka were killed from a special execution pistol that was given at an order of former minister of internal affairs Yury Sivakou.
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After an investigative group, consisted of officers of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the KGB and prosecutor agencies, had caught the traces of kidnappers and arrested special rapid response squad commander Dzmitry Paulichenka, the Prosecutor General Aleh Bazhelka and the KGB Head Uladzimir Matskevich were ousted. But soon Paulichenka was released by a personal order of Aliaksandr Lukashenka. In fear of being persecuted, Alkayeu and Bazhelka had to leave Belarus.
Two opponents of President Lukashenka were allegedly abducted and killed at the order of the coutry’s top officials, their families, opposition activists and independent journalists believe.