Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections

Праваабарончы цэнтр «Вясна» беларускі хельсінкскі камітэт


Administrative proceedings brought against Valery Misnikau

Valery Misnikau
Valery Misnikau

Mr. Misnikau was summoned to the Čyhunačny District Police Department of Viciebsk, where the head of the department of law enforcement and prevention, Major Aliaksandr Rybakou questioned him regarding his appeal to the prosecutor's office.

The reason is that the assistant prosecutor Siarhei Sinitski believes that Valery Misnikau insulted him during his appeal to the prosecutor's office by calling him “inadequate”.

Therefore, the assistant prosecutor drew up a report about the “insult” and the police brought administrative proceedings under Art. 23.5 of the Code of Administrative Offenses, “insulting an official in the exercise of official authority”, which is punished by a fine of 20-50 basic units.

September 10, Valery Misnikau appealed to the special commission on the legal issues related to the elections under the Viciebsk City Prosecutor's Office and had a talk with the assistant prosecutor Siarhei Sinitski. As it follows from the appeal filed by Mr. Misnikau with the Viciebsk City Prosecutor's Office, he had been included in precinct election commission No. 17 by the decision of Pieršamajski Distrcit Executive Committee of Viciebsk of August 26, 2015. However, he wasn't invited to the first sitting of the commission and he didn't find his surname in the list of the commission members, published at the website of the Viciebsk City Executive Committee.

Therefore, Mr. Misnikau asked the prosecutor's office to find how this could happen and who ordered to exclude him from the commission after the end of the process of its formation. At first he appealed to the prosecutor's office in writing and then came for a personal audience and left an entrance in the book of comments and suggestions, where he asked the prosecutor not to delay the consideration of his appeal. He also appealed to a representative of the commission on legal issues related to elections, but didn't get any answers to his questions.

According to Valery Misnikau, the officer of the prosecutor's office was asking him the questions that weren't related to his appeal, that's why he called him “inadequate”. However, Mr. Misnikau believes that he hasn't insulted the officer by this word. During his questioning at the police he
was referring to the dictionary definitions of the words “adequate” and “inadequate”. He also suggested to conduct a linguistic examination of the words with the aim to find whether they were obscene or offensive.

At the same time, Valery Misnikau emphasizes that his unlawful exclusion from the election commission remains undisclosed. He regards the claims of the assistant prosecutor Siarhei Sinitski as unsubstantiated. Meanwhile, the electoral campaign is coming to an end, whereas the prosecutor's office still hasn't given an answer as to who and why ordered to exclude the civil society activist from precinct election commission No. 17 of the Pieršamajski district of Viciebsk.

"Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections"