Belarusian creatives and all those supporting us are becoming a family with strong bonds, and all the pressure on us makes sense as long as we find peaceful and creative ways of resistance.
Aleś Harbul, a poet and local history expert, held a single-person picket against the violence in Pastavy on 15 November and was detained. On November 18, the Pastavy court issued a warning to him.
Taras Kruckich, journalist and film critic, member of the BelarusDocs festival detained on November 15, was sentenced to 25 days of arrest.
Ilia Jasinski, an actor of the Republican Theatre of Belarusian Drama, was beaten severely during his detention on November 15 and hospitalized with a broken spine.
Makśim Karžycki, actor of the Yakub Kolas National Academic Drama Theater, was detained on November 17 for participating in a solidarity action in memoriam Raman Bandarenka and sentenced to 10 days of arrest on November 20.
Volha Śemčanka, head of the Literary and Drama Department of the Mahileŭ Theater, and manager of the Belarusian Folk Dance Club, has been detained for participating in a march in memory of Raman Bandarenka on November 15 in Mahilieŭ.
Earlier, Volha was prosecuted twice for participating in unauthorized mass events.
Edward Dmuhoŭsky, a well-known local history expert, tour guide and public activist, was sentenced to 10 days of administrative arrest for participating in a rally in memory of Raman Bandarenka on November 15.
Alaksandr Sakałoŭ, sculptor detained on November 15, received 15 days of arrest.
Vadźim Dzmitranok, a well-known architect and former member of Viktar Babaryka’s initiative group, was detained and severely beaten on November 15. He is now in hospital with a closed-head injury, numerous hematomas and possibly severe damage to the internal organs.
He is being guarded by a convoy, as he is now a suspect under Article 342 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Belarus – the organization of group actions, grossly violating public order and involving obvious disobedience to the legitimate demands of the authorities (punished with a fine, or arrest, or restriction of liberty for a term of up to three years, or imprisonment for the same term).
Michaś Mišuk, the artist who created some of the first street art in Kastryčnitskaja, one of the most creative streets in Minsk, received 13 days of arrest.
Dźianis Waronski and Alaksandr Škiranda, the buskers detained near the Yakub Kolas Square metro station in Minsk on November 20, received 12 and 13 days of administrative arrest for “participating in a cultural and entertainment event without the permission of the Minsk City Executive Committee.”
Detained in Minsk during the march of the districts on November 22:
Illa Čarapko-Samachwalaŭ, actor, leader of the bands “Petlya Prestrastiya” and “Cassiopeia” (received 15 days of arrest); Ćimur Reiźis, keyboardist for Addis Abeba band and Sergey Pukst’s projects (received 13 days of arrest); Jauhen Junaŭ, photographer, member of the renowned art group “Belarusian Climate”, a legend of the Belarusian advertising market.
Pressure and Dismissal, Strikes
Pressure on the Men’s Choral Group Uniya has continued. Three members of the choral group have faced imprisonment for now, and the leading soloist Aliaksandr Šyk’s wife Maryna was also detained and fined. Now the couple is threatened to have their seventeen-year-old adopted son taken away.
Mikałai Stońka, an actor of the Republican Theater of Belarusian Drama, quit the theatre and recorded a video appeal condemning the pressure on the theater and unprecedented violence in the country.
12 employees of the New Theater in Minsk had to quit, some by their own decision, other under pressure of the director, after their strike was found illegal in the court. By the order from the authorities, no other state theatre in Belarus is allowed to hire the actors.
Jaŭhien Malikaŭ, a writer and art critic from Mahileŭ, author of the book “Traditions of carved decor in the folk architecture of south-eastern Belarus (late 19th – first half of the 20th century)” was fired from Belarusian State University of Transport, where he worked for 16 years, for his active civil position.
Three specialists of the Center for Experimental Directing of the Academy of Arts informed the rector about the beginning of the strike on November 20. In response, the dean warned that most likely, their Center for Experimental Directing will be disbanded.