We received the following text by email:
“On May 21 anonymous anarchist street artists placed an installation on Zybitskaya st. in Minsk, depicting typical relations between the police and the people in Belarus. There was a hole instead of the face of the person with a blank poster – passer-bys were eager to put their faces in there and take picture. The symbolic aim of this installation is very transparent: anyone can be a victim of repressive structures in Belarus.
In recent years our society has been literally suffocating from the police lawlessness. Media pages expose testimonies of situations when somebody was illegally detained, humiliated, beaten up or raped by the punishers in gray uniform. Not only political activists are suffering from the outrage – anyone who is only suspected of a crime, who was chosen to be a scapegoat in a cold case, or who just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time – can be a victim. There has been hardly a week without similar news recently.
The reaction of repressive services to the accusations on the part of civil society is astonishing by its unlimited cynicism. Police chiefs are openly scorning at people, publicly claiming that a person has hit himself against hard surfaces, attacked police officers, or even starting a criminal case against the victim – to prevent further leaks to the media. Thus they are striving to intimidate us even more, to make the aggrieved people keep silent and put up with their fate.
That said the law enforcement is totally out of any social control, and living off of our money, they answer not to us, but to their chiefs – Shunevich and Lukashenko.
At the same time, the actions of the law enforcement are given much propagandistic support: on TV and in state press we only hear about officers’ ‘exploits’ – kilos of confiscated drugs, tens of detained lifters and hundreds of fined alcoholics.
We, anarchists, don’t believe in the ‘good police’, don’t believe that under capitalist order the law enforcement can defend the interests of the common people. They were not created for that and they are being paid from our pockets not for that. The ruling class – by force or deceit – took everything away from us: resources, rights, freedoms, the ability to decide our own lives and they put their hounds to guard the taken, who are now ready to tear apart anyone who entrenches upon the property of their masters. In their deceptive manner they present these hounds as ‘law enforcement’, holding bravura parades in their honour, installing praising billboards for them and producing bootlicking TV shows about them. But this cheap glare can hardly delude anyone. More and more Belarusians realise that the main task of the repressive services is to forceful oppression of those who tries to stand up against injustice and to demand their rights. No positive effects of their actions like detentions and isolation of real villains cannot outweight the structural harm that the law enforcement inflict to people, cannot redeem the violence that people are suffering from them on daily basis.
The law enforcement, prisons and other hierarchical institutions are created by the authorities to keep us under control, to organise and place under the command of the privileged minority. The system is reproducing itself, causing crime by unjust social relations, atomisation and alienation. But the cogs in the machine – police, prison authorities, SWAT units – have become its slaves and hostages long ago, which was demonstrated by the situation in Krichev [where a bunch of police officers protested against working rights violations and were dismissed]. They are being thrown away like garbage as soon as their term of use expires. This society is seriously ill and it cannot be cured by decrees and bills. Only we can do it, by openly and bravely, time and time again, standing up against injustice wherever we find it.
We call all Belarusians to fight the police lawlessness:
– Be vocal about the outrage, go public about all the cases;
– Support the victims of the outrage morally and financially – no one should stay alone with their misfortune. Let’s show them that solidarity is stronger than their intimidation!
– Organise protest actions against lawlessness in your towns – not everyone can come to Minsk, but anyone can self-organise together with friends and acquaintances make an illegal meeting at the police station, where people are being tortured or block police vehicles heading to protest crackdown.
Enough fear – it’s time to resist!”
Video of the action: