Creation of concentration camps for protesters, carte blanche for murders from Lukashenko and reactions to Karpiankou’s leaked audio recording; Fazel does his best to get away with the situation and gives fake information to the media; arrested students will be kept behind bars for another two months
15 January 2021 | BYHelp-Mediagroup
Camps for protesters and other shocking plans of the Lukashenko regime to kill civilians: audio recording from BYPOL initiative
The BYPOL initiative has published a recording of a man whose voice resembles that of the former head of the GUBOPiK (Main Directorate for Combating Organized Crime and Corruption) of the Interior Ministry of Belarus Karpiankou (now Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs – Commander of Internal Troops).
The recording was made in October 2020 at a farewell meeting with the personnel. At the meeting the man spoke about the new types of special equipment arriving from Russia, with greater lethal force, which should be used against civilians, and the methods of their use up to lethal.
He assured his interlocutors that Alexander Lukashenko personally guarantees impunity for such actions when using weapons and special means. You can find a full transcript of the recording in this material.
Here are some cynical quotes from the audio recording.
“We are covered from all sides by the head of state in terms of the use of weapons.”
“That’s why, as president said, if someone’s coming right at you – use your weapon, you know. Non-lethal. Point-blank: in the legs, in the stomach, in the balls. To realize what he has done when he regains consciousness. Well, inflict something on him in that kind of a way: either maim, mutilate, or kill him. Use your weapon and shoot him right in the forehead, right in the face, right in the point of no return to the condition he was in before this.
If they resuscitate him, alright then. He’ll be missing half his brain, well, good riddance.”
Also, the record mentions the murder of Aliaksandr Taraikouski. The speaker calls the deceased “a moron and a drunkard”:
“And it is clear why that drunkard and moron died, what’s his name… Yes, Taraikouski. Of course, he was killed by the rubber bullet that had hit him on the chest (…).”
Karpiankou talks about plans to create a special concentration camp for the indefinite resettlement of people who have repeatedly taken part in the protests. This camp is planned to be created on the basis of penal colony No. 22 in Ivatsevichi, the so-called “Wolf holes”. For this purpose, the Ministry of Internal Affairs has created a unified information system called “Riots”, which contains information about all persons detained for participation in unsanctioned mass events.
“Those arrested for the second time, must stay in this database. The assignment: to develop and build a camp, build a camp, well, not for prisoners of war, not even for internees, but a camp for the especially sharpshooters, such for settling out. And put barbed wire around the perimeter. Set up two premises: a floor with a furnace, and a floor for feeding, to make sure they work. But they must be kept there, until it all calms down.”
He also told how water cannon had to be used: to “smear” a person and “definitely with gas”. On behalf of Lukashenko, the security officials were promised awards, including “For personal courage” and “For excellence in maintaining public order”, monetary incentives. Karpiankou himself, along with other security officials, was awarded on 30 December.
Opposition calls for recognizing Lukashenko’s regime as terrorist
What Karpiankou said on the audio recording not only shocked the whole world, but also caused an unequivocal reaction.
Pavel Latushka, member of the Presidium of the Coordination Council (CC), head of the People’s Anti-Crisis Management (NAU):
“After Karpiankou’s statements, not a shadow of a doubt will remain: all atrocities in Belarus are committed on Lukashenko’s orders, and he is fully aware of it.
Karpiankou allows the security forces to maim and kill protesters, guaranteeing complete cover from Lukashenko. He admits that Taraikouski was shot by the security forces. He calls the protesters superfluous people, and promises in all seriousness that a special camp will be built for their resettlement, surrounded with barbed wire.
We will transfer this record to the UN Security Council, EU Council, OSCE, Council of Europe, and separately to the official authorities of Russia and the United States. We will raise the question of recognizing Lukashenko’s regime as terrorist.”
Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, national leader, Lukashenko’s main opponent in the 2020 elections:
“We have already called on the EU to recognize the GUBOPiK and OMON as terrorist organizations. Karpiankou has already become a suspect in a criminal case under universal jurisdiction, which threatens him with an international wanted list. He is already on the sanctions lists of the Baltic countries. We will not let the world forget about what is happening in Belarus right now. (…)
You do understand: terrorists are not those who go out into the streets to protest peacefully. Terrorists are those who know that traumatic weapons kill at short range and still order to fire. Terrorists are those who use violence to intimidate and illegally hold the power.
We are people, not animals. We’re talking about dialogue. They are talking about terror. We’re talking about freedom. They are talking about concentration camps. We offer peaceful solutions. They are proposing war.”
Elena German, widow of Aliaksandr Taraikouski:
“Drunkard and moron? I have no words for that. How could they do that? They killed a civilian, and now they are insulting him. They never opened a criminal case. Moreover, earlier he [Taraikouski] was exposed as a terrorist.
I assume this to be genocide. I have no hopes for any fair solution to the case now.
And Karpiankou’s statements simply do not fit into my head. They just kill people. How to live further in this country, how to raise children here?”
Rene Fasel is entangled in his own lies
The meeting of Rene Fasel and Alexander Lukashenko on the Ice Hockey World Championship is still being discussed in the media. In numerous interviews, Fasel justifies himself either for the joint photos taken in Belarus, or for the general overly friendly tone of the meeting with the Belarusian dictator.
One of the most recent interviews provoked a number of rebuttals.
The reason was false information that Fasel told reporters.
“We called directly many [opposition] representatives and announced our intention to meet, and this was warmly supported.”
“Here’s the drama: the opposition representatives tell us that they want this World Cup, that it’s a World Cup for the people. But there is clearly no dialogue between the government and the opposition.”
Moreover, the publication indicated either representatives of Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya (with whom Fazel allegedly communicated), or Yulia Tymoshenko (a Ukrainian politician who never figured in the theme of the World Ice Hockey Championship in Belarus).
Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya gave an unambiguous answer to the statements of the IIHF President:
“Mr. Fasel must be lost in his own words: neither I nor my team has met him in person. But we do know for sure that he met and even hugged Lukashenko and Baskov, who is suspected of murdering Raman Bandarenka. My viewpoint remains unchanged: it is inhuman to hold the World Championship in the country, which the Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs orders to turn into a concentration camp. We also sent letters to the Foreign Ministries of different countries with an appeal to speak against the IIHF World Championship in Minsk, until all political prisoners are released, detentions are ceased, and free and fair elections are held.”
Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya’s letter was sent to the Foreign Ministries of Canada, Russia, Kazakhstan, and European countries that were qualified to participate in this year’s Championship. The letter says that the tournament must be held in another country, because in Belarus it poses a threat to the safety of all potential participants and justifies repressions in the country.
The Belarusian Sports Solidarity Foundation (BSSF) also gave a rebuttal:
The Foundation was ready to hold a working meeting and provide maximum assistance in organizing the transfer of the World Cup, as well as provide the IIHF with facts of repression in Belarusian hockey. The meeting at the request of the Fund was to be held in Zurich before the visit of the IIHF leadership to Lukashenko. However, the International Ice Hockey Federation in an official letter, referring to a tight schedule, canceled it.
In his interview, Rene Fasel openly lied one more time: “This is the drama: the opposition representatives tell us that they want this World Cup, that this is a World Cup for the people. But there is clearly no dialogue between the government and the opposition.”
The position of the Sports Solidarity Fund on this issue remains unchanged: the World Cup should be moved from Belarus, and Dmitry Baskov and other hockey functionaries involved in the repression should be disciplined by the IIHF.
In his interview, Fasel tries to justify himself and show himself as a peacemaker, claiming that he wanted to turn the World Cup into a World Reconciliation Championship. Some of the strongest hockey countries in the world – Finland, Czech Republic, Sweden, Denmark are against the World Cup in Minsk. The need to transfer the World Cup from Minsk was also announced by numerous politicians, including from Norway, the USA, Germany, Lithuania, Poland and, of course, Latvia, which was supposed to host the competition together with Belarus.
Belarusian students remain behind bars
Belarusian students were one of the most active and massive groups of protesters, despite expulsions and administrative arrests. The reaction of the authorities turned out to be tough – on 12 November, in Minsk, KGB officers detained ten students of various universities: someone was taken through the broken doors, someone was kidnapped on the way to work or study. Among them is Alana Gebremariam, a graduate of the Belarusian State Medical University, a member of the main board of the Coordination Council and assistant to Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya on youth affairs, an activist of the organization “Belarusian Students Association”, the first and only national student union, the representative of the Belarusian student community in Europe. They were all searched and their computers were seized. Volha Filatchankava, one of the teachers of the BSUIR, was also detained, she participated in a video message against the detention, violence and harassment of students. All 11 people are suspected under the first part of Article 342 of the Criminal Code (organization of group actions that grossly violate public order). The maximum sentence under this article is three years in prison. The lawyers of the detainees signed a non-disclosure agreement and cannot comment on the progress of the investigation. Today it became known that all those arrested have been extended the term of detention in the pre-trial detention center for two months. During this time, their names were recognized by thousands of people, hundreds, thousands of letters were written to them. Initiative groups of universities and strike committees demand the immediate release of all students. According to Belarusian Students Association, since August 2020, 399 students were detained for participating in peaceful protests, and 131 people were expelled from universities.
For more information on the events of 15 January 2021, please visit Infocenter Free Belarus 2020: