On 29 October 1937, the Soviet secret police (NKVD) shot down 132 representatives of Belarusian national elite in the present-day KGB prison. Former political prisoner Mikalai Statkevich and his associates have staged the Remembrance Chain, a memorial event to honour the executed, near the KGB headquarters in downtown Minsk.
Two dozen participants who brought white-red-white flags and candles were being watched and filmed by plainclothed police.
Belarusians must keep coming to this crime scene; such action may contribute to the repentance of the descendants of the executioners, Statkevich believes.
Activist Mikalai Salyanik was dressed in a prison uniform and had homemade handcuffs. A bit later, he left the prison-associated stuff on the steps of the KGB building. According to the man, ‘no trial, no record’ practices should never happen again.
“Thousands of innocent people were tortured and killed in the KGB prison and its basements,” Mikalai Statkevich said.
It is the fifth time the Remembrance Chain has taken place in Minsk.
Politician Mikalai Statkevich, phot. Iryna Arakhouskaya / Belsat
Memorial events are taking place in Minsk on October 29, the unofficial day of remembrance of the Soviet repression in Belarus. The Night of Executed Poets has started at 20.00 in Kurapaty, a Stalin-era mass grave site on the outskirts of Minsk. Belsat TV is livestreaming the event.
belsat.eu, photos by Iryna Arakhouskaya