Minsk metro explosion: Five years pass (+documentary)


Five years ago, an attack in the Minsk metro killed 15 people and injured more than 300.

On the very next day, law enforcement officers detained two suspects – Dzmitry Kanavalau and Uladzislau Kavaliou. In addition to charges of committing a terrorist act in the metro, they were subsequently charged with the bombing in Vitsebsk in the autumn of 2005 and in Minsk on July 4, 2008.

Their criminal case was considered by the Supreme Court. At the trial, Mr. Kanavalau fully admitted his guilt. Mr. Kavaliou denied his implication in all the three explosions and said that during the pre-trial investigation incriminated himself and Mr. Kanavalau under pressure from the investigation. The court sentenced the both to death. Alyaksandr Lukashenka refused to pardon Kavaliou. Kanavalau did not even write a petition.


Many Belarusians, including some of the victims of the terrorist attack, doubt the criminal guilt of Kanavalau and Kavaliou. They pointed out that the trial did not meet the legal requirements, the defense’s arguments were ignored. Human rights activists, in turn, noted the unprecedented rapid execution of the accused in the attack, which, in their opinion, looks suspicious.

The authors of the documentary “Fear In Land of Tranquility” (director Katsiaryna Bortnik) studied the most controversial aspects of the alleged metro terrorists’ case.

Just punishment or legalized murder? What was the execution of Dzmitry Kanavalau and Uladzislau Kavaliou? Why did the main defendant fail to say a word at the trial? The film shows previously unknown facts, evaluations of independent experts, investigators telling about the system of persecution in Belarus, cases not considered by the court.


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