On 21 August in Ielsk the local police blocked the house in Kalinina Street, where a congress to nominate delegates to the Congress of Democratic Forces should have taken place, reported Radio Liberty. They stopped anyone coming near the house. Telephone communications were cut off. For three hours the police detained the driver of the privately-owned minibus Uladzimier Shytsikau who had driven Uladzimier Katsora and Andrei Tochyn, the gathering coordinators, from Homel to the district capital. They were closely watched. Police Major Aliaxei Shauchuk attempted to detain Mr. Katsora and Mr. Tolchyn at the market in a café where they had stopped to drink some mineral water. The guard explained that all new people coming to Ielsk arouse the suspicion of the police. But because the activists had passports with them, they had no other reason to continue detention. The gathering in Ielsk that was to have nominated delegates for the Congress of Democratic Forces did not occur.
Based in London, we are an informal group dedicated to supporting democracy and human rights throughout
the former Soviet Union. Our aims are:
Informing the public about issues in this area that receive little coverage in the Western media.
Staging peaceful demonstrations and letter-writing campaigns in support of specific causes.
Supporting and publicising nonviolent pro-democracy groups throughout the region.
Encouraging European and American involvement.
Support the Belarusian cartoonists
Third Way, the Belarusian organisation whose members are being prosecuted for producing satirical cartoons about Lukashenka,
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We are continuing to focus our efforts on the Belarusian prisoner of conscience Mikhail Marinich.
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