A former Donbas militant whose story was told in the article recently published on belsat.eu phoned its author and threatened to inflict bodily harm on her.
This refers to Dzyanis Glazkin, a 36-year resident of Lahoysk district, who fought on the side of the so-called Donetsk republic and then returned to Belarus.
Among other things, Belsat TV investigative journalist Katsyaryna Andreyeva focuses on Belarusian citizens’ involving in illegal armed groups in Donbas. She has repeatedly interviewed militants. The journalist found Mr Glazkin in social networks and invited him to tell his story.
“Usually I find these people in Russia’s Vkontakte groups and introduce myself as a journalist from Minsk. Hardly any of them specify which media outlet I work for,” Andreyeva said.
She contacted Mr Glazkin through WhatsApp. During a two-hour conversation, he not only told Katsyaryna about his war experience in Donbas, but also admitted that he had agreed to be an agent of Belarusian law enforcers on his returning. In addition, he sent a photo of the passport page bearing stamps on crossing the border of Russia and separatist-controlled territory of Donetsk region.
On January 12, Glazkin phoned Andreyeva and started threatening and cursing.
“You should relocate! I am not the only one who is eager to twist your neck!” the former militant shouted.
When asked about the exact reason for his being irritated, Glazkin failed to give any clear explanations. He called the journalist ‘corrupt’ and promised that she would face ‘problems’.
“Murder threat falls under a criminal article,” Aleh Aheyeu, a lawyer at the Belarusian Association of Journalists (BAJ), said.
However, according to the expert, if Katsyaryna Andreyeva reports the case to the police, they may draw a protocol on her for ‘illegal distribution of media products’ due to Belsat TV’s lack of accreditation in Belarus.
Belsat.eu journalists will continue to investigate into Belarusian citizens’ involvement in the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine which has been going on for five years.