Radio Liberty freelancer detained in Minsk, his apartment searched and equipment seized

On November 25, a freelancer of the Belarusian service of Radio Liberty Andrei Kuznechyk was detained, his wife told said. His equipment was confiscated. That same evening, the Telegram channel of the Radio Liberty was hacked.

Andrei Kuznechyk. Photo: Radio Liberty

According to his wife Alesya Rak, Andrei went for a bike ride about 5 pm, but rather quickly returned with four people in plain clothes. Only one of those identified himself as Ivan, the others said nothing.

“The search was quite intelligent, they didn’t touch my things and the children’s things,” says the wife of the detainee. “They took all of Andrei’s equipment and phone, my cell phone and my tablet, money. Andrei was ordered to get dressed and follow them. They wouldn’t let him take anything with him, except his spare pants. They said they were taking him away for a couple of days.”

She does not know on what grounds her husband was arrested. She was only given a paper with a list of things taken.

The Kuznechyks family lives in Minsk and has two small children. Andrei Kuznechyk is a philologist, a cyclist. He has also been a blogger since the times of Livejournal.

Around 7 p.m. on November 25, the Telegram channel of Radio Liberty started publishing insulting remarks about its posts and links to Telegram channels of the Interior Ministry, GUBOPIK, “Pool of the First,” associated with the press service of Alyaksandr Lukashenka and others associated with the ONT TV channel and security services. The list of the channel’s administrators was also published. The channel’s editors promptly deprived the hackers of access.