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Prosecutor demands prison terms for BKDP leadership

A full week of court hearings in the case of the leadership of the Association of Trade Unions "Belarusian Congress of Democratic Trade Unions" continued. Today the state prosecutor demanded punishment for Aliaksandr Yarashuk, chairman of the BKDP, his deputy Siarhei Antusevich and the accountant Iryna But-Husaim.

Prosecutor demands prison terms for BKDP leadership
Siarhei Antusevich, Aliaksandr Yarashuk, Iryna But-Husaim

During the trial, the lawyers requested that Alialsandr Yarashuk's characterisation and a letter of appreciation from Yara International, which highlighted Yarashuk's efforts in allowing the company to adjust its social policy towards Belaruskali, be attached to the case. The International Trade Union Confederation, the Confederation of Labour of Russia and the Confederation of Trade Unions of Georgia also described Aliaksandr Yarashuk. At the same time the KTR characterization especially emphasized that "Aliaksandr Yarashuk sought to conduct his work in strict compliance with national and international law, based on his own clear vision of the sovereign interests of the Republic of Belarus. The defence also said it was going to call as a witness - Boris Kravchenko, president of the Confederation of Labour of Russia.

During the questioning, the participants in the trial tried to justify their motives in detail.

Among other things, Aliaksandr Yarashuk pointed out that it was his actions that made a serious contribution to the normalisation of relations with Yara International, which is one of the biggest buyers of Belaruskali products. However, all of the defendants admitted in court that they had committed the crime.

The prosecution mainly focused on the economic side of the matter. The prosecutor stressed the significant, in his version, damage to the Belarusian economy caused by the actions of the accused during the unsanctioned rallies and other protests in 2020. The prosecutor estimated the damage from blocking the street traffic in Minsk, just for one day of the protests, at several tens of thousands of Belarusian rubles. In addition, the prosecutor's office believes that the publications of Aliaksandr Yarashuk posted in social networks contain calls for illegal actions, up to and including changing the existing constitutional order.

Today, 23 December, a regular court session took place, at which the prosecutor asked the court to sentence Iryna But-Husaim to 1.5 years in prison, Siarhei Antusevich to 2 years and Aliaksandr Yarashuk to 4 years.

The verdict in the case of the leadership of the BKDP trade union centre will be passed on 26 December at 14:15 Minsk time.


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