On August 25, hundreds of Belarusians paid last tribute to 28-year-old Mikita Kryutsou whose death might be linked to the crackdown on post-election protests in Belarus.
Mikita Kryutsou did not return home on August 12; ten days later, his body was found in the urban forest area in Partyzanski district of Minsk.
According to the Belarusian Investigative Committee, he hanged himself, there were no signs of violence on the body, they state. The committee refused to initiate a criminal case over the death. Moreover, the investigators say Kryutsou might have committed suicide due to the would-be divorce. However, his wife Alena, relatives and friends question the official version, stressing that the deceased was a person who loved live and took divorce plans easy.
Earlier, the wife said she did not know whether Mikita was going to join the protesters. Kryutsou’s friend who asked not to be named recalls that Mikita took his personals that could be of use in the next few days before going to work on August, 12.
“As soon as he disappeared, we were not worried, because we did not rule out that he was hiding. If this were not the case, why take those things? He apparently anticipated they could detain him,” he said.
On August 23, a video that shows Mikita Kryutsou standing and holding a white-red-white flag in front of riot policemen in Maladzechna (allegedly on August, 12) appeared on the Internet. It may be indicative of his being involved in peaceful protests.
Notably, Belsat got information from several sources report that Mikita’s phone was last tracked in the Republican Centre for Neurology and Neurosurgery in Minsk, but there is no confirmation of his staying there. What is more, there is a police department near the medical facility.
On August 23, Mikita Kryutsou’s family contacted the Investigative Committee with a request for ‘bring unidentified persons who used violence to justice’. At the farewell ceremony, the grandmother of the departed blamed OMON riot police for the death, saying that they had beaten her grandson to a pulp. It should be noted that the authorities were holding back on handing over the body to the relatives, and the latter had to arrange a closed-casket funeral.
As reported earlier, deaths of Alyaksandr Taraykouski, Alyaksandr Vikhor, Artsyom Parukou, Henadz Shutau also occurred amid the protests . The body of Kanstantsin Shyshmakou, a member of the precinct commission from Vaukavysk, who refused to sign the final protocol of the election, was also found. The death circumstances are still unknown.