Minsker jailed for colored hearts on window

Belarusians decorate their balconies and windows in people’s colors. January 2021. Photo: AK / Belast

A Minsk court has arrested 52-year-old Ihar Lemesheu, father of two young children, for 15 days for the white-red-and-white hearts, which the man had put on the window, reports telegraph channel “Viasna watching”.

On March 18, Ihar Lemesheu was taken from his home to the local police department. “A concerned citizen” allegedly reported to the police that she saw political leaflets on the bulletin board and that someone had put up WRW hearts on the tenth floor. The man was charged under Article 24.23 of the Administrative Code (“Violation of the order of organizing or holding mass events”) and taken to the detention center on Akrestsin Street.

In court Ihar Lemesheu explained that on New Year’s Eve he hung snowflakes and hearts in the children’s room together with the children. Later the snowflakes were removed, but the hearts remained. Judge Syarhei Shatsila asked about their colors.

“Why didn’t you cut out the green hearts?”

“A red heart is normal”.

Judge Shatsila considered it a picket and arrested the man for 15 days. The 20-cm hearts were confiscated.