Revolution through Social Networks: Trends and Figures

Detention in Minsk on 13 July 2011. Photo credit: euroradio.fm.

Yesterday Belarus security services detained over 100 participants of the "Revolution through Social Networks".  Authorities undertake unprecedented measures to prevent the actions relying on men in plain clothes and transporting detainees in vehicles without any license plates.  Many are severely beaten by the security service agents. The number of detainees and prisoners is clearly increasing. Respectively number of “silent protests” participants decreasing in comparison with previous weeks. The average person sentenced for ‘silent protests’ is a 22-24 year-old male.

In total, across the country for all silent protests around 2000 people (roughly half of them in Minsk) were detained, including around 80 journalists. Belarus authorities block access to social networking web sites and conduct preventive arrests and "preventative talks" with the activists of the action.Those who repeatedly take part in protests face tougher punishment. For example, Ruslan Ustimenko from Gomel is now spending 30 days of administrative arrest in solitary confinement for participating in several "silent actions".

Table 1. Brief statistics on the actions "Revolution through social network" (according Human rights Center Viasna, BAJ  and independent media; there is no official statistics)

Date

Engaged cities

Number of participants

Number of detained

Judicial  punishment

June 01

Minsk

some regional centers

 

No data

No data

-

June 08

Minsk

some regional centers

400 ppl in Minsk

50 ppl in each regional center

No detained

-

June 15

Minsk

all regional centers: Brest, Grodno, Gomel, Vitebsk, Mogilev

10 district cities

1-2 thsd ppl in Minsk

several hundred ppl in regional centers,

dozens of ppl in cities

more than 240 ppl, including 9 journalists

1 person in Gomel

a fine of Br770 000 ($150)

charged under the administrative Article 17.1 “disorderly conduct”and Article 23.4  “disobeying to police”

June 22

Minsk

all regional centers: Brest, Grodno, Gomel, Vitebsk, Mogilev

40 district cities

up to 4 thsd ppl in Minsk

several hundred ppl in each regional center

dozens-hundreds of ppl

more than 460 ppl, including 8 journalists

33 persons

fines from Br70 thsd to Br1.05 million (from $14 to $200)

all charged under the administrative Article 17.1 “disorderly conduct”

June 29

Minsk (heavy rain)

all regional centers: Brest, Grodno, Gomel, Vitebsk (heavy rain), Mogilev

approx. 20 district cities (according to independent media)

Minsk – up to 1.5 thsd ppl

Grodno – 1.5 thsd

Gomel – 600-800 ppl

Brest – 600 ppl

Vitebsk – 300-350 ppl

Mogilev – 500 pp

269 ppl

including 12 journalists

130 persons

fines from Br105 thsd to Br875 thsd (from $20 to $175)

administrative arrests from 5 to 15 days

charged underadministrative articles “disorderly conduct”, “disobeying to police”, “participation in an unsanctioned action”

July 03

Independence Day

 

Minsk

all regional centers: Brest, Grodno, Gomel, Vitebsk, Mogilev

50 district cities

at 7pm:

Minsk – 500 ppl

Grodno – 1000 ppl

Mogilev – 1000 ppl

Gomel – 300-500 ppl

Brest – 100 ppl

Vitebsk – 100 ppl

Total – 390 ppl including 20 journalists

Minsk – 210 ppl

Grodno – 120 ppl

Gomel – 30 ppl

Mogilev – 20 ppl

Up to 150 persons, including 11 journalists

Most ppl are charged to administrative arrests from 3 to 15 days, others are fined up to Br1.05 million ($200)

under the administrative Article 17.1 “disorderly conduct”

July 06

 

9 Minsk districts

all regional centers: Brest, Grodno, Gomel, Vitebsk, Mogilev

30 district cities

Minsk – 1000 ppl

Grodno – 200-300 ppl

Gomel – 150-200 ppl

Brest – 400-600 ppl

Vitebsk – 150 ppl

 

 

Total – 400 ppl including 28 journalists

 

Minsk – 190 ppl

 

 

193 persons (92 in Minsk), including 7 journalists

More than 90% are charged to administrative arrests from 5 to 15 days, others are fined from Br350 thsd to Br1.05 million (from $70 to $200)

underthe administrative Article 17.1 “disorderly conduct”

 

 

Belarus Digest prepared this overview on the basis of materials provided by Pact.

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