19 July 2019, Friday, 20:27
We are in the same boat

Story of Aleh Byabenin’s suicide does not hold water

In such a way Zmitser Bandarenka, “European Belarus” coordinator comments on the latest statement of law-enforcers to “Interfax”.

On September 9 “a person from law-enforcing agencies familiar with the matter” told to “Interfax-Zapad” that “persons, who found the body of Aleh Byabenin, did not address the law-enforcing agencies immediately, but informed acquaintances of the journalist about his death first.” As said by the interlocutor of the agency, “when the team of investigators arrived to the crime scene, unauthorized people were there, and they had a possibility to change the crime scene before the official incident site inspection and shooting photos were made.”

Charter97.org website has asked Zmitser Bandarenka, a coordinator of “European Belarus” campaign, to comment on this statement.

- These hysterical statements and information leaks mean one thing: the story of Aleh Byabenin’s suicide goes to pieces. We have told that initial statements of the people from law-enforcing agencies who worked at the scene of the journalist’s death, and of the forensic expert who performed the autopsy in the mortuary in Staubtsy, differ radically, and do not match even in the time of death. We were shocked ourselves, why it took so much time for policemen to come. As said by family members, policemen were called out immediately after the body was found. Byabenin’s brother told us about Aleh’s death ay about 5.20 p.m. September 3. At 6.30 p.m. we were near the summer cottage. And policemen arrived at 7 p.m. only. We were waiting for their arrival on the road near the house. Neither me, nor Andrei Sannikov, nor Alyaksandr Atroshchankau, nor Aleh’s friend Fiodar entered the yard, believing that a forensic team would come, possibly with dogs, and would carry out a full and thorough examination of the crime scene (how naïve we were!). Yesterday I was interrogated in the prosecutor’s office. They are probing into only one lead, a suicide. When I offered the crime investigator Azarevich to tell about my guesses and about discrepancies in the initial statements of the deputy prosecutor of Dzyarzhynski district and the forensic expert, he said that didn’t interest him.

And now Lukashenka’s henchmen, Zimovskys and Musiyenkas, are flinging mud at our deceased friend, while policemen and workers of prosecution agencies, understanding that their story does not hang together, are trying to turn aside the blow,. But they won’t be able to conceal the truth.

Once under pressure of circumstances and obvious facts, Matskevich, KGB chairman, and Bazhelka, Prosecutor General, had to arrest commander of a special task squad Dzmitry Paulichenka, and tried to arrest Viktar Sheiman. It cost them their careers, but they understood that too many people knew about Paulichenka’s involvement in abductions of the opposition leaders. One can say, they have done their best. Incongruities became apparent in Aleh’s case immediately. And today people who are in charge of this investigation have understood that they have got into an awful situation.

I am addressing workers of law-enforcing agencies. You know the truth. Do not keep silent. Remember how people from the team investigating disappearances of Zakharanka, Hanchar, Krasouski and Zavadski died “accidentally”. Remember that you are officers, that you are men. Do not become participants in the crime. Do not become pawns in a dirty game of other people, Zmitser Bandarenka stated.