On the evening of 5 January, a series of raids took place in several Minsk courtyards. About ten people were detained by unknown men in balaclavas in Uruchye, a few more – in Novaya Borovaya and on Pritytskogo Street. And after a while, several people ended up in hospital. One of them is Viktor Moroz, TUT.BY journalists talked to the man to find out the details of the incident.
Viktor Moroz is a resident of Novaya Borovaya neighbourhood, who stood up for a woman in a courtyard of his house. An unknown masked man, threatening with a weapon, kicked him in the stomach. After that, Viktor was detained and continued to be beaten by unknown persons. Moroz is currently in an emergency hospital with a closed head injury.
When he was dragged out of the yard, Moroz says, “they hit me several times in the stomach and many times in the back of the head, this is how I got a concussion.” At about midnight Viktor was brought to a police station, they did not beat him there, but he felt bad and dizzy, at about 4 am they called for an ambulance, and at 6 am he was admitted to the emergency hospital.
“We just happened to be on the street, at 10 pm we decided to take a walk before going to bed. We walked for about 20 minutes in the yard, and then it all started. I did not see what happened, I saw only my neighbour running away from men. One grabbed her by a jacket, the rest you have seen on a video.”
According to Moroz, the unknown men did not say that they were policemen, neither when they were chasing the woman nor when they draw their weapons.
“I approached them to find out what was going on, they hit me several times in the stomach and threatened with a weapon. I called the police, reported that a man has a gun. Then these two said that they were the police, I replied that they don’t act like policemen. I asked them to show the documents or at least introduce themselves. They did not want to do this and responded in a rude manner,” says Moroz.
Viktor Moroz says that he called the police again and at that moment saw how nine or ten masked men jumped over a fence and ran up to him.
“These two [the unknown men who tried to detain a woman] said, ‘This one too’ and they twisted me. I asked them what I had done, they said that they need to have a talk with me. I was ready to go myself if they were policemen, so I asked them to introduce themselves. But they said they didn’t have to. They started twisting my hands, carried me and sort of started mocking me.”
In the Pervomaisky District Department of Internal Affairs, the police drew up a report on Moroz for violation of article 23.34 of the administrative code of Belarus [violation of the procedures for organizing or conducting public events/actions – Ed.]. According to the report, the man took part in a procession of people with flags chanting: “Long live Belarus”, “Go away.”
“I told them that I will not sign this nonsense,” said Moroz.
The Ministry of Internal Affairs described the CCTV footage from Novaya Borovaya as “provocative video fragments”, and that the kick in the stomach was necessary “to increase the distance”, the weapon was “traumatic”, while the policeman “had control of the situation until the arrival of the patrol group.”