The use of weapons by Belarusian law enforcement agencies to disperse peaceful protests

The use of weapons by Belarusian law enforcement agencies to disperse peaceful protests

Law enforcement agencies unlawfully used weapons to disperse peaceful protests

Наталия Федосенко / ТАСС
02.03.2021

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In Belarus, on August 9, 2020, the falsification of the presidential elections took place, it led to the start of mass protests throughout the republic, which continue to the present day. Law enforcement agencies in violation of Art. 29 of the Law of the Republic of Belarus of 17.07.2007 No. 263-З “On the Internal Affairs Bodies of the Republic of Belarus” unlawfully used weapons to disperse peaceful protests.

For reference:

An employee of the internal affairs bodies has the right to use a weapon, that is, to fire a shot (s) from it, against a person:

committing an attack on an employee of the internal affairs bodies and (or) another citizen, when their life or health is endangered;

committing an attack as part of a group or an attack involving the use of weapons or explosions, arson and other generally dangerous methods, the use of vehicles, machines or mechanisms, against living quarters or other legal possessions of citizens, premises, other objects of organizations, military or service outfit of internal cases, against people or objects protected by internal affairs bodies;

committing an action directly aimed at the forcible seizure of weapons, ammunition, military and special equipment or special means in the possession of an employee of the internal affairs bodies;

taking or holding a person as a hostage;

caught while committing the actions specified in paragraphs from two to five of this part, and trying to escape when, in order to avoid detention, this person uses (threatens to use) a weapon, an explosive, an explosive device or other items that pose a danger to the life or health of an employee of internal affairs bodies or other citizens;

escaping from custody, convoy;

who does not obey the lawful demand of an employee of the internal affairs bodies, immediately surrender (put) a weapon, explosive, explosive device or other items, the use of which may threaten the life or health of an employee of the internal affairs bodies or other citizens.

Committing by a person actions lawfully prohibited to him by an employee of the internal affairs bodies and expressed in an attempt to approach the employee of the internal affairs bodies closer than the specified distance, to get something from his clothes or carry-on luggage, or other actions that may be interpreted by an employee of the internal affairs bodies as a threat of use violence dangerous to the life or health of his or other citizens grants the employee of the internal affairs bodies the right to use weapons in accordance with this Law.

An employee of the internal affairs bodies has the right to use weapons, including firearms, and to use firearms also in other cases determined by the President of the Republic of Belarus.

An employee of the internal affairs bodies has the right to bring the weapon into readiness for firing if he believes that in the current situation the possibility of its use or use is not excluded.

It is prohibited to use weapons:

with a significant crowd of people, when unauthorized persons may suffer from this;

to the direction of warehouses (storages) containing flammable, explosive, and also potent toxic substances, and means of transporting these substances;

in relation to women, people with obvious signs of disability, minors, when their age is obvious or known, with the exception of cases when these people commit an armed or group attack or other actions that threaten the life or health of citizens.

As a result of the unlawful use of weapons, citizens with bodily injuries of varying severity began to enter medical institutions. In Minsk alone, in the period from 9 to 22 August 2020, 1141 people with various bodily injuries applied for medical help, including 64 with mine-explosive wounds and 45 with gunshot wounds.

Full document is available in pdf for download. Document contains shocking illustrations of wounds and weapons used.

 

Download .PDF (4,42 Mb)

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