KGB’s lawlessness legalized
18:00, — Politics
On 14 June the “chamber of representatives” passed the law ”On the national security agencies of the Republic of Belarus”.
The law gives the KGB extraordinary authorities. Lawyers and human rights activists met the bill with a harsh critique in late 2011 when it was submitted to the “parliament”. Nevertheless, on 21 December 2011 the deputies passed the bill in the first reading.
From now on the KGB needs only an approval of the “council of the republic” and Aliaksandar Lukashenka’s signature in order to freely enter private property and use physical violence and armor against Belarusian citizens.
The following abstracts of the bill were received with most criticism:
“An employee of the national security agencies bears no responsibility for the damage caused by physical force, special devices, military and special technology, armor in a situation that involves a professional risk as defined by the Law and other legal acts…”
*** Article 14 “Rights of the national security agencies”
…To enter, if necessary by damaging devices (that can be closed) and other objects, freely and at any time, residences or other legal property of physical entities, properties and/or other premises of state and other organizations (with the exception for properties and premises of diplomatic, chancellor or other missions of foreign states, international organisations that have diplomatic immunity in accordance with the international agreements of the Republic of Belarus, and premises where employees of this missions, organizations, and their families reside), and to conduct examinations during persecution of persons suspected of a crime, or when a crime is supposed to be committed… or if a person is hiding from the agencies conducting a criminal investigation…
Retired KGB colonel Valery Kastko commented the bill in an interview to Radio Svaboda:
- If a special service agency discovers traits of terrorism, hostage taking etc, - of course, force is needed. But it doesn’t happen here! Here this stupid force is used against common citizens. The question is not whether force can or cannot be used. It can and it should! But for what, and against whom? The CIA, Mossad, or other agency has a sufficient legal basis. But they have limitations in what they can do, and who they report to. Nobody cares about such things here. Everything is possible: they came, burst in, arrested, searched… It’s just wrong. This shows at what professional level they are. And the intention is to intimidate the society with these violent measures. This is the purpose, to make people fear that tomorrow the KGB will come, knock out the door – and you cannot do anything about it.”
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