Minsk: ‘Student marches case’ sent to court

Students’ protest in Minsk. Photo: ТК / Belsat

The Belarusian Prosecutor General’s Office has submitted the so called student marches case to court.

Twelve persons are suspected of ‘organising actions that grossly violate public order and are related with obvious disobedience to the lawful demands of representatives of authority’, the office reports.

Among the would-be defendants, there are young people born in 1996-2001 and a former assistant professor at one of the universities. According to the investigators, the latter coordinated the protesters’ actions and their movement in a number of cases, she also provided information about the whereabouts of law enforcement officers. The suspects’ goals were ‘engaging more people and disrupting university classes’, they stressed.

The Belarusian authorities suggest that a ‘criminal mechanism’ was developed to involve students from a number of higher educational institutions in participate in mass events in other educational institutions. Such actions were aimed at spreading false information about the number of protesters, which was supposed to result in increasing disobedience to the lawful requirements of university authorities, the Investigative Committee said.

In mid March, the agency published the names of the persons charged as part of the case.

On September 1, Belarus’ official Knowledge Day, lots of students took to the streets to protest against vote rigging and the authorities’ harsh response to dissidence. OMON special forces and plainclothed policemen detained young people across the country. The students’ protests continued in September and October.

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