Some declassified documents on the events of December 19
The attack of the Government Residence caused indignation in Belarusian society.
The hidden motives of these events are known: foreign analytical centres formed and financed certain pro-radical structures.They made an attempt to overthrow the legal authorities and impose their understanding of “democracy” on society. At the moment these events are being interpreted in different ways.
An absurd notion is being obtruded upon public opinion. It is strenuously hammered in that there was an orderly crowd at the Square, people who only came to “learn the results of the voting”. It is said that there was no organised leadership whatsoever, that everything happened accidentally.
Those, who are interpreting the events that took place this way, also remind about the visits to Minsk of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Poland and Germany, and their offers to “pay well” for the “correctly conducted voting”. There are also loud appeals to be heard of such aggressive politicians as Frau Beck, Mr Buzek, who are fiercely demanding all possible kinds of punishment for Belarus.
It is widely known that the foreign policy, pursued by Belarusian top leadership, is of exceptionally amicable character, it is aimed only at the development of good-neighbourly relations with all countries; and the country’s domestic policy provides steady and progressive advance of Belarusian society. Even the most vehement opponents of the Belarusian authorities, both inside and outside Belarus, have to admit the unique nature and the effectiveness of the Belarusian model of development.
However, the very fact of existence of such an independent state building its policy based on its national interests, causes harsh irritation on the part of some foreign political forces willing to subdue to their interests those post-Soviet states that are not yet under their influence, to which the Republic of Belarus belongs in the current conditions. The reason for such close attention to and interest in our state on the part of foreign political consultants is obvious.
It is, for the most part, conditioned not by the problems of “democracy”, but by the exceptional geopolitical importance of our country in the Eurasian area.
The determination of certain Western foreign political forces to look down on the East is not new in itself. This aspiration used to be manifested in the far-off crusades of the West to the East and in the relatively recent “Drangen nach Osten” during World War II. But the times have changed. Military invasion of a country aimed at overthrowing the ruling authorities is no longer “effective”. Another strategy has been employed – aimed at inspiring an internal political conflict controlled from the outside. A striking example of its implementation is the so-called “colour revolutions” in several post-Soviet countries.
It is not the first year that such attempts have been made in Belarus, too.
But despite the sophisticated methods of influence and the exquisite tools, such as economic pressure, intimidation, imposition of different sanctions and restrictions, Belarus still holds to its interests and continues to realise its policy in compliance with its national interests, including participation in different projects initiated by the West, the major of which is the EU “Eastern Partnership” project.
It is necessary to state that this programme, which is in its essence a frame that can be filled with any content depending on the current situation, was immediately employed by the powers whose aim was to use the process of improving Belarusian-European relations in their mercenary motives. An attempt was undertaken to employ “Eastern Partnership” in order to weaken the cooperation between Belarus and Russia and to finally convert the republic into a buffer in its own way between Russia and Europe (virtually, a sanitary cordon), and also to transform it into a source of cheap resources, including labour force and a market for EU products.
It is not without reason that one of the foreign politicians during a conversation with his associates in November 2009 said that “Belarus is a country where it is still possible to snatch something”.
It is hardly a coincidence that the major officially declared postulates of “Eastern Partnership” were eminently suited for implementation of the strategy on “democratisation” of Belarus: effective management and stability, economic integration with European political processes, energy stability and the establishment of interethnic and personal relations, and most importantly, - “development of democracy”.
From a concept note of the developer of the civil campaign “Tell the Truth” (hereinafter, TT CC) A. Feduta about the work executed on the development of TT CC:
V.Nekliaev is a representative of the so-called clerisy. He possesses a certain charisma, has not been participating in the domestic political affairs for a long time. The public does not associate him with the image of a radical opposition member, he is better known as a poet.
His weaknesses can also be of use to us. In his past he was virtually an alcoholic (the illness of many artists). Our experts conclude that it creates conditions for forming a super idea in him of being superior, of being destined for a higher mission. We also possess essential incriminatory evidence against him, which enables us to give him additional stimulation at any stage of the project.
We believe it expedient to use the proposed candidature as the major one to represent the campaign. The earlier proposed candidate can be promoted along as a backup plan.
Today the law-enforcement agencies know for certain all the circumstances of a meeting in one of the cafes in Brussels, where the agents of foreign intelligence services M., K. and Sh. instructed the leader of the “Tell the Truth” organisation.
It is now that the ex-candidate for presidency repents of his actions, “I was used like a con…m”, - but back then he was inspired by the parting words.
From the very beginning the “Tell the Truth” civil campaign, completely subdued to the purpose of foreign “supervisors”, was considered a “long-term backup project”, oriented not to win the presidential elections but to subsequently “change the situation in the country” and to participate in the parliamentary elections of 2012.
The original text of recommendations of the foreign donors for the Directorate of the “Tell the Truth” civil campaign envisaged a range of tactical guidelines including:
“estranging oneself from the “unpromising opposition”, represented by “democratic” political parties;
V.Nekliaev’s objective after the elections – to partially occupy A.Milinkevich’s niche, at the same time not to conduct any negotiations with him;
avoiding the situation when V.Nekliaev becomes a “common” candidate.
V.Nekliaev repeatedly stated in his inner circle that he needed to “make an elegant exit from the election campaign” to “remain a politician”. He was serious about participation in the parliamentary elections of 2012 and alongside A.Milenkevich saw himself by that time as “the leader of a major opposition party”.
The West spent much money on it…The financing scheme of such an oppositional internet resource as Charter ‘97 is a vivid example of it. The website is known to have been used as a tool to canvass for Sannikov’s candidature. The political commitment of this resource was stated outspokenly. The financial provision of its activity was ensured by the well-known O.Bebenin. Below is the chronicle of only several months of his activity:
- a staff member of “the US Helsinki group” Catherine Fitzpatrick transfers him a grant of 211,000 USD;
- the International Fund “Frontline” allocates 6,000 Euro to Bebenin for “uninterrupted operation of the website”;
- the organisation “Alliance of Liberals and Democrats “For Europe” transfers 26, 5 thousand Euros to support the activity of Charter ‘97;
- the Norwegian Helsinki committee transfers 98,000 USD.
It is just a scintilla of the resources (referring to several months) provided at the instigation of foreign intelligence services, for Sannikov’s needs by different funds and organisations to conduct an information campaign of the alternative candidates. It is not charity, it is a political call deposit…The following technology is used to build up the notorious TV picture which occupies a particular place in the scenarios of “colour revolutions”.
The emotionally warmed-up crowd of young people led by specially trained people takes an influential governmental institution by assault, go inside, smash everything, and hang out victory flags. It is all broadcast over TV real-time and correspondents report that “the regime has fallen”, “the democracy has won”, and the new class has taken over the power. This news is immediately supported by all means of communication, and in an hour or two the corresponding diplomatic missions consider this to be a fact and start speaking of official recognition of the new winners. It is believed that this process is irreversible. This scenario took place in Serbia and in other countries where “colour revolutions” technologies were victorious in the long run.
The events which took place at Independence Square showed that several hundreds of journalists arrived in Minsk from abroad just to get this picture. They did not visit the electoral offices but, as if at the command, accompanied the candidates (Nekliaev, Statkevich, Sannikov) and stood at the steps of the Government Residence ready to start filming…There were surprisingly few common reporters among them.
Among the people who were supposed to show the picture was, for example, Anton Vernitsky, the head of Russia’s First Channel news broadcasting. The stars of “crisis reportage” arrived from Warsaw, Berlin and other European capitals. The majority of them met during the joint missions in Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan and Moldova.
Such meticulous and special attention on the part of the media to the Belarusian elections testifies to evident disinterest in the electoral process as such.
The politically-committed media concurrently arrived to cover one more “colour revolution”, although there seemed to be no prerequisites for it in Belarus, which was publicly acknowledged by Western politicians.
The facts and the available documents, which were confirmed by the logic of the events ensued on December 19, testify to the following.
Approximately by the beginning of 2009 the analysts of Western special services (primarily of Poland and Germany) who had been persistently monitoring the political events in Belarus, made a unanimous conclusion and informed their governments of the urgent need to modify the existing approaches to Minsk.
It was particularly acknowledged, that constant confrontation, hypocrisy and dishonesty of the “traditional” heads of Belarusian political parties and movements contributed to complete discredit of their public image. The system which was established by Wieck, the former President of the Federal Intelligence Service of Germany, who also set up a fictitious network in Belarus which in official documents was referred to as “United Opposition”, collapsed owing to completely different interests of its leaders.
It was connected with the fact that the “single candidate” of the democratic forces Milinkevich was caught blatantly lobbying the foreign diplomatic interests of the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and performing unwarranted embezzlement of the allocated finances and discreditable practices involving his spouse I.Kulei.
The longstanding candidate for leadership Lebedko, who was involved in a number of scandals including those of financial nature, also considerably discredited himself. The analysts of German and Polish special services recognised one more fact.
Intrigues and public scandals in the BPF resulted in a total loss of reputation of the given oppositional party. One might point out an actual collapse and atomisation of the largest oppositional party BSDPG.
It was noted that, despite all the efforts taken by Western political and financial centres during the parliamentary elections, all oppositional candidates failed to take seats in governmental bodies. In their discreet messages the analysts mentioned that the reason for it was not the “pressure of the authorities” and not the rigging of the elections.
Allusions were made to the poor organisational skills of the opposition, the theft of the finances allocated for this type of work, total loss of contact between the oppositional politicians, activists and the electorate. The analysts suggested to their governments proceeding from the “cosmetic changes” to a radical change of the situation, which would entail a number of drastic measures, first of all, aimed at the formation of a practically new oppositional environment.
Special services and their associated funds working under cover of cultural organisations masterminded the following activities.
1) To find people in Belarus familiar with modern political technologies and having practical experience of participation in large-scale election campaigns.
2) To start negotiations with those people and, subsequently, to enlist their cooperation.
3) To offer to those people drawing up a plan of successive actions.
4) To make an overall estimate of the programme financing.
Afterwards, it was recommended that the activists who were supposed to take part in the new project should be recruited and trained in accordance with corresponding technologies. It was suggested that following careful scrutiny, the leaders of the project “Tell the Truth” should be checked with the help of operative equipment as well as tested on the polygraph.
On obtaining satisfactory results the leaders were to familiarise themselves with their immediate supervisors, who were, for the most part, intelligence service officers, working under cover of charitable funds. The leaders were also to be introduced to the heads of the largest countries in the US and the EU.
On completion of all the preparatory events the leaders of the project were informed of the objective of the planned which was formulated as follows. As the attempts at “soft democratisation” failed and the efforts appeared to be futile owing to the weakness and disunity of the opposition, it was necessary to concentrate on the establishment of new mass structures which would be able to use the forthcoming presidential elections for a brutal attack on the authorities. For this purpose, as it was stated in the most unambiguous manner, no stone should be left unturned.
In case the Belarusian electorate still votes in favour of the incumbent President, it will be necessary to create a situation providing an opportunity for street action with the participation of hired and specially trained militants. Their goal will be to seize one of the governmental buildings, force the law enforcement officers into taking up the fight, provoke the authorities and eventually compromise the elections. The heads of the “Tell the Truth” project were assured that if this was the case a number of EU governments would voice a consolidated statement to condemn the actions of the authorities, would provide both moral and financial support to those who’d come to harm during the street action and would try to discredit Belarus on the international arena.
Polite smiles and assurances of correctness were just a way of smuggling hundreds of thousands of US dollars to Minsk literally in suitcases. These funds were employed to create powerful organisational and propaganda structures within the framework of the “Tell the Truth” project. The heads of such structures were invited to visit a number of EU capitals and Washington, D.C. where state officials provided more than just encouragement to the “revolutionaries” from Minsk: they guaranteed direct moral and financial support. Some of the ambassadors from the EU countries literally assumed the responsibilities of instructors and curators for those who were supposed to use force and wiles to change the regime in Belarus. Various kinds of such activities went on for several months.
While Mr. Sikorski (Poland) and Mr. Westerwelle (Germany) on their official visit to Minsk spoke to the Belarusian government of their sincere willingness to help in developing democracy, the officials from a number of embassies took on the unseemly role of riot-mongers. Probably, such hypocritical actions served to strengthen confidence in those “political consultants” who were led to believe that there could be no antidotes to the tools of “colour revolutions,” especially if those tools are generously greased with cash. They paid no attention to the will of the absolute majority of Belarusians. The masterminds and organisers of yet another “colour revolution” relied on the power of money that was to become an insurmountable force.
The West could not fail to see that none of the presidential candidates could be regarded as a strong politician, had any kind of intelligible political programme or renown of the electorate. Those who financed this venture with the money of European tax-payers were perfectly aware of the fact that the success of the “revolution” would lead to a crisis erupting in the centre of the continent. They also realised there would be bloodshed in Belarus. Yet this was of no concern for them. Their primary goal was to replace Lukashenko, replace him with an obedient figurehead and coldly witness the unnecessary ordeal of a nation consumed by chaos.
This is a brief summary of a plan devised for Belarus by organisers and masterminds of yet another failed attempt at a “colour revolution.”
Despite the radical opposition’s rather limited support, its foreign sponsors deliberately set before the organisers of unauthorised protest actions the aim of attracting a crowd of a hundred thousand people.
Two possible scenarios were sketched out. The first one anticipated a crowd of 100 to 150 thousand at the square, which would make taking the power by force real. That is why long before December 19 the Government Residence was chosen as the primary target to be seized by the opposition forces.
The second plan envisaged a more modest number of protesters – no more than 10 thousand. This, as believed by the heads of the “Tell the Truth” campaign, would at least partially allow them to justify their actions in the eyes of the foreign sponsors and show that they could really do something.
Through “independent” mass media Statkevich voiced “three variants of the post-election situation:” “Provided we gather 100 thousand people at the square Belarus will become a free and happy country; if the number is significantly lower but the protesters are active Belarus will change for the better even if it takes time; but if the participants of the action come simply to loiter idly, listen to some music and disperse the country will be gripped by fear and hopelessness for good.”
At Oktyabrskaya Square in Minsk Andrei Sannikov, following the plan previously drafted and approved by foreign experts, makes a dramatic statement: “Lukashenko’s regime is over; we proclaim the Government of National Rescue whose members are the candidates for presidency.” After that Sannikov called upon the crowd to follow him to the Government Residence, where, as he put it, they would hold talks with the authorities that had surrendered their power. The hired provokers greeted this statement with roar and a storm of applause, and the rest were fooled into following them to Oktyabrskaya Square and the Government Residence. Naturally, what they heard was a blatant lie, yet the statement proclaimed nothing short of an overthrow and many citizens became involved in a perfectly illegal and dangerous action. We know what happened then. The authorities condemned the illegal acts of disobedience and restored public order.
Riot police (OMON) arrived at the scene of disorders and several minutes later the square was secured.
Nothing came out of the protests and the so-called “December Revolution” ended in a fiasco.
At his press conference on December 20 the President instructed the special services to publish the now declassified documents to inform the general public of what had actually happened behind the scenes, to publish the names of all organisers, inspirers and participants of the disorders including those from other countries, reveal the financing mechanisms used by destructive organisations, explain that acting under the guise of “democracy bringers” are people who would not hesitate to plan and make an attempt at carrying out a staged and potentially bloody “revolution” in a 21st century European country to cynically and unashamedly force a different political order on a nation.
Perhaps, some of the readers will be shocked by the sheer amount of financial aid provided by the West to the Belarusian “revolutionaries.” Probably, others will be disgusted by the actions of certain diplomats and employees of special services who bluntly interfere in our domestic affairs… Having read the declassified documents, some will undoubtedly frown at the kind of totalitarian surveillance practices. But let’s not jump to conclusions just yet. Firstly, all law-governed states reserve the right to exercise control over the activities of destructive political groups to avert possible acts of terror and mass disorders. Secondly, once a criminal case concerning the riot has been launched, telephone conversations of all individuals participating in or accessory to the case in question are to be checked. This is what the law demands! Thirdly, if the attempted “colour revolution” had gained momentum it would have been very difficult to stop. That is why the relevant authorities not only closely followed the situation but also managed to restore law and order within several minutes. Those guilty of instigating and organising the disorders were brought charges against in full conformity with the law.
From the confiscated “Tell the Truth” Strategic Action Plan
“Possible priorities of the future counter-propaganda campaign. Background campaign (rumours).”
“…One of the components of the support campaign for the candidate of national confidence should be deliberate production of stimuli for the dissemination of rumours. Rumours are to be regarded as information passed on by means of informal communication and having a virus-like dissemination pattern. The ideal platform for such campaign is the Internet, especially various social networks, blogs, Twitter (Internet social network).
A well-run rumour campaign forces the authorities to continually look for excuses, which helps create the so-called presumption of guilt and evokes greater mistrust towards the government in the general public.
One of the basic rumours to be supported throughout the campaign should be the rumour of Lukashenko’s possible resignation. Its purpose to assure the general public and the elite of the very possibility of such resignation.
Suggested rumour cycles:
The personality of Lukashenko and his family, the rumors about the president undermine his personal position and destroy the image of a strong, brave and resolute man.
Here are the main directions and goals of the “background campaign”:
- The poor health of Lukashenko and members of his family.
- Lukashenko gets treatment abroad and spends a lot of money on it.
- Lukashenko’s money is deposited in foreign banks. This fact should be emphasised, and sums should be constantly increased.
Economy. Rumors of economic problems must countervail the information that the country has been barely affected by the crisis.
The following rumors are also effective:
- Every day brings more and more unemployed, new unemployed people are expected.
- The country is being sold out on the cheap, clandestine privatization of enterprises is going on at full speed. Officials sell state property to the Arabs and the Chinese for bribes.
- The government has not fulfilled the IMF requirements, and credits should be repaid ahead of schedule.
The safety of large public projects is questioned.
- The nuclear power plant to be constructed will use a Chinese reactor that can be prone to explosion.
- The nuclear reactor at the nuclear power plant is, in fact, future missiles, and a platform for nuclear blackmail ...”.
From the TT CC “Strategic Action Plan”
What is necessary to create a political crisis in the country:
“Stage 1. Creating conditions to have the voting results delegitimised through use of “independent” observing, as well as by bribing members of electoral commissions.
The directorate of the "Tell the Truth" campaign has begun to study the executives and members of territorial electoral commissions and potential candidates for local election commissions. Particular emphasis was placed on the so-called promising polling stations where V.Nekliaev was rather popular among voters.
The plan is to personally approach members and executives of the commissions at the selected stations and offer them incentives in an attempt to induce them to make public statements that the voting results announced by the CEC have been falsified, and voice the “real” data on the votes V.Nekliaev has received in the given district”.
Reference note. They were promised a “compensation” of up to 100 thousand dollars for inducing officials to cooperate with the “campaign”.
The TT CC believed that with 3 to 5 executives of election commissions (“and if things turn out well, even more”) making such statements opponents of the government would be able to “meaningfully” challenge the official outcome of the election, appeal to foreign structures and launch a “justified” campaign of civil disobedience.
“Stage 2. Hold mass protests. As the electoral process went through its main stages, the opponents of the government planned to foment social tensions in the country, increasing the number of participants in the planned protests as the election date got closer”.
From operative materials
“A. Mikhalevich noted that he had studied in England, travelled to Poland and Germany. In one of his trips to Germany, he got a phone call from a woman who introduced herself as a German journalist A.M., and suggested a meeting. During that meeting, the “journalist” started asking questions beyond the previously agreed subject of the conversation. In particular, she was interested in the political and economic processes taking place in Belarus. After that, A. Mikhalevich had another two meetings with her. In A. Mikhalevich’s view, that was not a journalist but a representative of the German special services.
A. Mikhalevich said that the BPF (Belarusian Popular Front) party is mainly funded by the U.S., Germany and Poland. According to A. Mikhalevich, the bulk of the grants was appropriated by the top leaders of the BPF, never reaching the rank-and-file members of the party”.
From an analytical note
“The financial standing of the opposition candidates.
It was noted that because donors refused to finance A.Milinkevich (the 2006 presidential candidate, the “For Freedom” movement leader) and he had no money to support the collection of signatures with, he is depressed. He does not answer mobile phone calls.
Y. Romanchuk received about 150 - 200 thousand U.S. dollars from IRI to stage local events, after which he went to Germany and the United States to obtain additional financing.
A. Kozulin does not intend to run for President, but is ready to provide paid assistance to the Tell the Truth campaign in nominating V.Nekliaev. A.Kozulin views participation in the elections as a possibility to earn money”.
From a summary
During preliminary talks with V.Nekliaev, A. Sannikov stated that “cooperation with the “Tell the Truth” leader would inflict damage on his reputation, costing him at least 500 thousand US dollars.
"... A. Feduta (ideologist of the TT CC) and A. Vardomatsky (director of the research laboratory “Novak”) discussed the TT CC financing during the election campaign. The plan is to get about 400 thousand US dollars in donor money to support signature collection, and 600 thousand US dollars to run the propaganda campaign. As the funds to collect signatures were allocated, Y.Slutskaya (a former editor-in-chief of the "Komsomolskaya Pravda v Belarusi” newspaper) stated that she needed 100 thousand for media support, and S.Vozniak requested 250 thousand to produce printed materials. The executives of the entity decided to discuss this issue at the following Directorate session. It was noted that in September A. Dmitriev (the head of Nekliaev’s Office) would receive 150,000 US dollars (A. Feduta - 70,000, and A. Vardomatsky - 80,000).
To finance the preparation of analytical documents on the social, political and economic situation in the republic for the TT CC, A.Feduta proposed that 50,000 - 100,000 US dollars should be allocated from his off-budget fund to organise the activities of the TT CC external consultants (V.Silitski, etc.). At the following Directorate session, they would be presented with a list of consultants and their salaries.
A. Feduta reported that S.Gaidukevich, the Chairman of the LDP (the leader of the Liberal Democratic Party), contacted him and suggested that he should, for 1,000,000 US dollars, assist the “Tell the Truth” campaign in promoting its candidate in the forthcoming election period and withdraw his candidacy in TT CC support. The members of the Directorate assumed that this was a provocation by law enforcement agencies. A. Feduta noted that, perhaps, S. Gaidukevich is a channel for dialogue with the authorities.
S. Vozniak said that A.Feduta himself invited him to the “Tell the Truth” campaign.
According to S.Vozniak, the TT CC was sponsored by representatives of a “governmental structure” of the Republic of Poland (the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs).
The foreigners only stayed in touch with the “campaign” leaders they selected: first that was A.Feduta, and then (from May 2010 and on), with A.Dmitriev and V.Nekliaev.
S.Vozniak’s tasks included the transfer of the money he received from A.Feduta and A.Dmitriev abroad to Belarus. After receiving the money from those people, he was to deliver it to Belarus (he did not have any personal contacts with the sponsors).
From an operative summary of the state security agencies
On July 19, after A.Dmitriev agreed in a conversation with the NED head R.Pototski that he would participate in the youth group to organise the “ploshcha” (square) event, he was contacted by D.Dashkevich, the Young Front (YF) leader who suggested they should discuss the plan of action for the structure being created. D.Dashkevich proposed to call a youth group “Belarus for freedom” or “Free Square”. He noted that the group would include representatives of the “Young Front”, “Right Alliance”, the Belarusian Popular Front and the movement “For Freedom” or “Free Square”. The coordinators are D.Dashkevich and a representative of “For Freedom”.
In early August, in the EU territory, D.Dashkevich would hold an initial meeting of the youth group representatives to draft proposals to organise the “ploshcha” and the entity’s budget (up to 2,000,000 US dollars - part of it would be used by the YF). Money is scheduled to arrive in September. From September till October, the entity activists would buy tents (about 500) and other items at shops and markets and would keep them at secret addresses. D.Dashkevich plans to gather about 3,000 people at the “ploshcha”. If Oktyabrskaya Square is sealed off by the law enforcement agencies, a different venue for a tent camp is considered”.
A fragment of Skype correspondence between A.Beliatski (Vice President of the International Federation for Human Rights, Minsk) and the coordinator for the Freedom and Democracy Fund (Warsaw).
— Hello, this is Marek. Can you do me a favour? Will you send some data, please? In English, if possible.
— Hello, speaking.
— I’ve got a request: can you confirm, if anyone from Poland asks you, that our fund took part in creating your large database on repressions as part of the project on victims of repressions? It’s unlikely that anyone will ask, but just in case… The thing is that our Foreign Ministry wants to know what the information effect of our project is. We need to give them an answer. So we said that we helped for free. You know what this is about.
— OK, good. If they ask, we’ll confirm.
— Thank you! As for this year, the payout to the victims of repressions is 200,000 zloty. Plus a fee for your coordinator. 200,000 zloty is about 7,000 dollars.
— Has it been confirmed?
— Now we are waiting for the money to be transferred to our account. And could we maybe preliminarily agree with you later in Warsaw about who is to get it?
— I think we’ll be able to decide on that.
— The Foreign Ministry has cut the sum by half. We asked for 500,000 zloty.
— We can start today then. This is fine, too, because we have about 40,000 from the NED, though we’ve already spent half of that money…
— They’ve got utter theft there. They’ve sponsored two partnership projects in Belarus in the field of … veterinary medicine. One agro-enterprise from northern Poland got ten percent of the Foreign Ministry’s money for foreign assistance! They were given two and a half million zloty! Utter corruption.
— It’s far from us… You’re in a better position to judge.
— And yesterday Sikorsky boasted to your oppositionists that he helps the victims of repressions a lot, and our project was given as an example. An outright lie.
— Ha-ha-ha!!! Those POLITICIANS, I’m afraid they’re all like that.
From an operative note
“In a number of cases S. Vozniak called regional coordinators of the “Tell the Truth” civil campaign to Vilnius where he gave each of them a specified sum of money in cash in a prearranged location (a hotel or a café).
In other cases S. Vozniak devised another scheme. Having received money from A. Dmitriev, he divided the sum and put the money in luggage lockers at a railway station in Vilnius (or in bank safe deposit boxes). Then, contacting the regional coordinators via Skype, he gave them the number of the box, the code, the date and the time when the said functionary or representative had to come to Lithuania and take the money.
Thus, S. Vozniak distanced himself from distributing the money personally and the indication of a specific date allowed him to make sure that the couriers could not see each other while withdrawing the money from the said luggage lockers in Lithuania.
The foreign currency was taken to the Republic of Belarus only in cash by selected couriers.
S. Vozniak said that in summer 2010 he received a bag with a large sum of money in cash from A. Dmitriev in Vilnius (more than 700,000 USD according to his own estimate).
There is no doubt that first of all the special services of Poland and Germany have a hand in the events of December 19. They planned and organised the “Tell the Truth” civil campaign, which was supposed to become ‘the new opposition force’ capable of changing the government in the country. To achieve this objective they selected organisers, technologists and used significant financial resources. Various funds were used as fronts for smuggling the money into Belarus. Poland became ‘a training range’ where they tried to form a force capable of changing the legal authorities in Belarus. There they organised special training camps for ‘activists’, prepared the future ruling class, reached foreign policy decisions with the assistance of the diplomatic corps. All this is regrettable, at least because the people of brotherly Poland have very close ties with Belarusian people. It is a pity that some political intriguers do not want to understand that.
As it is known, the main instigators and ringleaders have been arrested and charged, investigation is now underway and it will put everything in its place. These people have been detained not for their political views. They have been arrested for specific actions, which manifested themselves particularly in their attempt to seize the Government Residence and plunge the country into chaos. They have been arrested for forming an illegal ‘government’.
Below is a fragment of the questioning of a person named in the criminal case, which casts light on many events. In particular, it casts light on the active participation of official representatives from Warsaw and Berlin in the events in Minsk.
From a protocol
Officer (M) puts questions to a high-ranking functionary of the “Tell the Truth” civil campaign (M1)
‘M1. About the source of money, I already told you everything yesterday and my opinion will be unchanged, I don’t care who says what. This is German money, this is German politics. Next it’s just using the countries which, let’s say, are directly related to Germany.
M. Are these Poland and the Baltic states?
M1. Mainly the Baltic States, also Poland, sometimes Sweden. And I am not talking about the financial aspect now, but the organisation. I don’t have any other answer, I’ve already told you that.
M. I see.
M1. I’m quite sure, when we talked about Milinkevich yesterday… I think that Germany just arranged for Milinkevich not to be among those who got any funding. It may have been an agreement of some sort, not just taking money away from Milinkevich.
M. Tell me this. About a month ago you went to Poland, when the first problems with the money transfer arose. Who did you speak to there?
M1. Do you mean when I was with Nekliaev?
M. Yes, you might be with Nekliaev.
M1. Well, that was an official visit.
M. Who did you speak to about the financing?
M1. I spoke to everybody about the financing there. We spoke to Litvin (Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Poland) and to some people who introduced themselves as officers from the secretariat. We spoke to them as people asking for assistance, “Yes, we need more funds, could you help us in any way?” Plus we had a very important meeting there, and it was in Poland by the way that we had a very important meeting with some Germans.
M. Which Germans?
M1. It was a sample of experts over there.
M. Who organised the meeting with the Poles?
M1. These were the Germans who organised the meeting with the Poles for us. But I also told you yesterday that when we were in the receiving office, the assistant remarked that …
M. And whose office was that?
M1. I think Litvin’s office, now I don’t … She made a remark, it was either Sikorsky’s office or Litvin’s office, I don’t remember whose assistant she was, but she said ‘You should be grateful for your meeting in Poland.’
M. Why do you think they cut down on the financing? Have you become somewhat more independent?
M1. No, the presidential elections were supposed to be a transition stage, the objective was to get into Parliament little by little, and in this way to legalise the relations and a sort of work with Belarus. The presidential elections were supposed to be just a stage. We were to show ourselves, we were to show leadership, we were to form as the new opposition which Europe will speak to.
M. Has anyone voiced this strategy?
M1. This strategy was not made public, last time in Brussels they told Nekliaev directly, well it may not be exactly the way they did it, but he was told, “We are interested in the elections being recognised by Europe to the extent Europe can recognise them, so that it is a dialogue and so on. Milinkevich has already played his part and nobody is going to continue any dialogue with him, we need a new leader, a new structure, it will make it possible to conduct international policy, but there will be a parallel dialogue as well. And from now on, if this structure suddenly starts the dialogue with the authorities, everybody will trust this dialogue. It means that Europe can support it. There are people who are considered as opposition, but who are actually no opposition at all like Tereshchenko, Gaidukevich, and now Mikhalevich. Europe can't accept such opposition, it is impossible due to the political reasons. We need the opposition which will be not that radical, well, but just opposition and when the dialogue starts, it will be beneficial for everybody”.
... The conversation continued
“Did A.Feduta go away with any documents?
М1. Yes. We continued working, and he left and then he came back. But on the whole it was we who wrote the strategy, that is, there was not anybody who told us how to do it in the right way. You know, I just think that one of the possible variants why they did not say that there, was Germany… One of the versions is that because Germany has never worked with such big political projects. Maybe it is an attempt, say, to refer to those countries which are the usual sponsors, like the Baltic States, well, and Poland. That is to refer to what will be usual for the authorities. On the other hand, in case of failure, you see, Germany will come out with the spotless reputation. It could just be possible to agree with Poland so that Poland didn't finance it anymore after all.
M.Who tried to organise Milinkevich's dialogue? Was it Germany? It concerns the question whether or not it participated in some projects.
М1. It just seems to me that Poland is not an independent player in the policy like that.
M. But Poland wanted very much to be this independent player. I understand what you are talking about. But they could just give it some powers or a chance.
M1. Proceeding from our last meetings where we already had some talks with Westerville, it just seemed to me that in case of the continuation, Germany will come out of the shadow more.
M. And who initiated the meeting?
M1. The meeting with Westerville?
M1. We didn't have a meeting, we had a telephone conversation of Nekliaev talking with him. But it was the initiative of the German party when we were in Brussels.
M. And what did they speak about?
M1. They spoke about some common things. He confirmed what had been said at the meeting in Brussels concerning the fact that Belarus should move in the European direction and that, of course, Russia won't so easily let Belarus go...”
From a confiscated “Tell the Truth” document
“NEW STRATEGY OF MUTUAL RELATIONS BETWEEN BELARUS AND RUSSIA”:
TASKS OF THE NEW STRATEGY
The top-priority task of the new strategy is to promote Russian support in the next presidential elections of the Leader of that political force, whose political platform guarantees, within a year after the elections, the change of social order and social and economic structure of the state, the change of the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus and the establishment of the parliamentary and presidential republic. The advantage of this way of events is obvious: carrying over the centre of gravity of “struggle for the country” in the parliamentary elections encourages all "significant" players in the political market of Belarus.
The secret support of "the candidate" by higher government officials, senior officers of the special services and the army, directors of the state enterprises becomes more active because the parliamentary elections will allow them to struggle independently for power in future.
Everybody will deal with the "transition" figure of a president-architect of the new system. And consequently even "the irreconcilable ones" can unite round "the transition" figure within the transition period.
After the parliamentary form of government in Belarus is established, the country will have not just a "controllable", but, undoubtedly, a "more predictable" political leader. Besides, the present structure of the Belarus economy anyhow promotes the situation – “the winner takes everything”. And only the parliamentary model can become steady, can mean “struggle according to the rules”, and consider interests of all groups, the model in which no subject can dictate the will to the rest of people. These objectives were generated by A.Feduta in V.Nekliaev's programme.
Taking into account the seriousness of the rates, substantial funds allocated for the “Tell the Truth” programme, and the events on December 19 demonstrated that "the liberal" principle was taken as a basis of the methods of its implementation: use of any means up to triggering off mass riots and bloodshed.
And they found V.Nekliaev, the new face of the campaign.
Behind the scenes of one conspiracy
Several declassified documents on the events of December 19
The masterminded scenario of the events which led to the attack of the Government Residence was initially based on the extensive financing, primarily intended for the activities of the civil campaign “Tell the Truth”.
From an operative summary
“On the eve of the elections day V.Nekliaev discussed the forthcoming unauthorised protest demonstration with the ambassadors of Poland, Germany and Sweden. On the eve of the elections day V.Nekliaev also had meetings with E.Buzek (Chairman of the European Parliament), R.Sikorski (Minister of Foreign Affairs of Poland), V.Klaus (President of the Czech Republic), G.Westerwelle (Minister of Foreign Affairs of Germany). The questions of assistance and personal support of the candidate were discussed during the meetings.
In Russia V.Nekliaev had a meeting with a representative of the Administration of the Russian Federation and, together with A.Sannikov suggested to him an alternative economic blockade against the Republic of Belarus, by declaring that Belarusian goods are dangerous for health. The purpose was to make Belarus lose the Russian market and face economic problems.
On September 1 and 2, 2010, the leaders of the “Tell the Truth” V.Nekliaev and A.Feduta visited Moscow to establish contacts with the officials of the Administration of the President of the RF in order to get financial and methodological assistance to the “Tell the Truth” campaign and to its leader in his nomination as a candidate for the Belarusian presidency. It was A.Feduta who arranged the visit.
V.Nekliaev and A.Feduta had a meeting with the head of the International Financial Centre of Russia A.Voloshin who chaired the Administration of the President of the RF from 1999 till 2003.The issue discussed was the provision of possible finances for TT CC on the part of large businesses which were interested in purchasing large industrial enterprises and promising plots for construction at the lowest price possible.
The main items of expense of the “Tell the Truth” civil campaign:
1. Running the office: salaries, office premises rent, office equipment, security service.
2. Information campaign, internet campaign, cost of development and placement in the mass media, rent of servers, development and support of the website and other information resources, purchase of newspaper during the electoral campaign.
3. Volunteers’ work: collection of voters’ signatures, canvasses, pickets, dissemination of printed materials.
4. Contingency costs: cell phone payments, travelling expenses, food and accommodation during business trips, other expenses connected with the campaign.
5. Training of teams.
6. Legal service and prompt legal assistance.
7. Sociological service.
8. Organisation of control over the voting.
9. Mobilisation to protect the results of the elections.
Calculation of the total cost of the campaign salaries can be made at 3 USD per voter. If necessary to work with 5 mln.voters, the formula would be as follows:
3 USD*5 mln. = 15 mln. + 10% of the budget are allocated for contingency expenses and a change of plans = 16, 5 mln. USD.
This sum included the cost of mobilisation to the square.
Approximate cost of the “ploshcha” was calculated according to the scheme:
Food - 50,000 people*10 USD = 500,000 USD per day.
It was assumed that the number of people at the square would be constantly growing; 50,000 people- is the largest number of people who are present at the square at the same time.
The inventory necessary for simultaneous presence of 15,000 people at the square is purchased in advance (4 months prior to the elections, minimum) and is estimated at 30 USD per person = 450,000 USD.
The cost of storage and delivery - 100,000 USD.
From an analytical note
Regarding the source of the money, members of the TT CC Directorate assumed that it was the money of official European institutions (“from Brussels”). In their opinion, no other source is able to provide that much money alone. Neither Poland nor Germany, nor any other country is able to provide this sum of money single-handedly.
Importantly, Germany plays the leading part. Among other “sponsors” there were representatives of a “governmental institution” of the Republic of Poland.
S.Vozniak, a campaign coordinator, used the students of the European Humanities University (Vilnius), with whom he was on friendly terms, as couriers in one of the main money delivery channels.
The couriers crossed the border on foot, which reduced the risk of personal check. It was planned that the money would not be stored in Belarus, but would be distributed among the stakeholders (members of the Directorate).
In some cases the amounts of 150,000 – 200,000 USD were transported at a time. After delivery within the shortest periods the finances were distributed among all TT CC members.
Bank safe deposits were reserved in Lithuania, Poland, Estonia and Latvia where the donor deposited the money for couriers.
Instruction for the TT CC functionaries on the delivery, storage and legalisation of financial resources in Belarus
Under the project there are four stages of working with funds:
1. Delivery of money to Belarus
There are several options of money delivery to Belarus, each having its advantages and disadvantages. No variant can be the only one available; the optimal choice is the combination of several variants depending on the situation. The main one is the “Courier” option.
Cashless payment – this method is suitable for a sociological service and, partially, for a media service.
How it works: the money is transferred within the EU (Warsaw, Vilnius, Riga, Tallinn) to the head of a sociological service. The latter transfers the money to a company in that country and that company places an official order with the Belarusian laboratory and pays for it from the account. Media service can also be partially paid up according to this scheme.
Cost: tax revenue 15%, bank fee up to 3%, VAT 18% + the percent for the money- transferring company.
a) legalisation of the Belarusian laboratory and media company activities;
b) legalisation of money.
Minuses: limited amount of money to transfer (up to 60, 000 USD per year).
“Master Card” – certain banks allow opening accounts including those not confirmed by IDs. That gives an opportunity to have different accounts for different people both connected and not connected with the project. An important aspect is that the bank card is not registered when withdrawing money from an ATM, it is only registered in case of payment for services with the bank card.
How it works: the money is brought to a certain city or is taken from the bank cell (see the “Safe” option) and is deposited to bank accounts in order to withdraw it via ATMs afterwards.
The amount one can deposit at a time is 25,000 USD, periodicity is approximately once a month. This method is used by businessmen.
Cost: bank fee 3%, withdrawal fee - up to 2%.
a) no need to cross the border and legalisation of money in the country;
b) opportunity to withdraw money in the country;
c) money management by anybody who withdraws money;
d) this method is not suspicious for anybody including bank officers, as everybody thinks that this is money of the business but not policy, which is common practice for the bank.
a) limited amount of money for a single withdrawal;
b) limitation for a single withdrawal from an ATM – 1,000 Euro per day.
“Partner” registration of non-governmental organisations is very simple in the countries adjacent to Belarus. NGOs may operate for donations of their members and third parties and act as sponsors themselves. The money received in Belarus as donations can be taxed up to 15 percent and then used at the beneficiary’s sole discretion.
How it works: an organisation is registered, and some amount of money is deposited to its account. This organisation donates money to the “Tell the Truth” institution, and the institution pays for the office and daily operational expenses with the money, as well as employs its staff. It is important that only foreign citizens should be founders of this organisation (the acquaintances and friends of the Directorate, except for the citizens of the Republic of Poland). There may be several organisations like that, and they can be incorporated one after another. Each organisation cannot be used for more than three to four months. The amount of money may vary and must be additionally agreed upon with lawyers.
Cost: registration of an organisation, 5 to 7 percent for transfer, the bank fee.
Pluses: activities and expenses of the central office are legalised.
a) limited nature of resources as this method can only be applied to operations of the central office;
b) during the campaign, it will be required to register and dissolve the organisation;
c) a certain period of time is required to register partner organisations.
The “Courier” will be the major method for the campaign. This variant is the most widespread and the most efficient, in spite of the highest degree of risk. It is based on the knowledge of psychology of frontier authorities and appropriate behavior. One may bring up to 10,000 USD to Belarus without declaring the money.
Courier employment. Each Directorate member selects his own team of couriers who follow the general rules and deliver the money in accordance with the schedule of the Directorate member. It is desirable to employ couriers via a third party. A courier is a person not associated with the campaign, politics, and public life in Belarus. In other words, an “average citizen”.
The best options for couriers are: 1) Elderly people 2) A family with a small child 3) A student 4) A handicapped person. Couriers never know each other.
The courier is unaware of the true purpose of the money, he or she only knows the legend. According to the legend, the money is delivered to Belarus as undeclared cash profit of a business entity. The courier is also briefed on the rules of behavior and information is given in accordance with the Instruction.
Money delivery. The courier arrives in the country to get the money and receives an amount for transportation. The money is not given in the city of money storage but in a different city or place. The trip back to Belarus across the border should take place at night, which causes psychological difficulties in conducting additional search by frontier authorities.
The courier should not have many belongings, and they should all be arranged in direct view of the frontier authorities, which creates the impression of "trust and transparency”. Everything must be in sight of border guards, ready for inspection. The money is in a special belt on the body of a courier, so you can detect it only through personal inspection. Personal inspection is performed only on direct orders from the central authority concerning the people on a special list.
With respect to an ordinary citizen, personal inspection is almost never used because of the complexity of the procedure (you need to detain vehicles, to make a detailed protocol, indicate the reason for inspection). The courier has only one number (Lithuanian, etc.), to which he should send an SMS in case of failure. It is desirable to employ an "observer" along with the Courier, who is not knowledgeable about the existence of the latter.
The "observer" does not know about the project and the details associated with the courier. The task of the "observer" is to be next to the courier, to monitor the possible surveillance, to report in case of emergency to a Lithuanian phone number. So, a ticket is booked for the “observer” in the same compartment or on the same coach next to the courier. The COURIER IS NOT FAMILIAR with the "observer". One carrier can be used four times, not more than once or twice a month. The courier does not know their trip schedule and receives information on each trip separately, having no idea whether he would be contacted again.
Visa support by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is required for couriers when implementing this option: a Directorate member comes to the Embassy of the Republic of Poland with a list of people that “participate in a number of workshops held in the RP at different times, for instance, “RP Democratic Institutions”, he submits the list with passports and filled out forms, and then comes and picks up the passports. A 6-month multi-Schengen visa is required. The approximate periodicity of these applications is once in two months, and once a month starting from the 5th month prior to the elections. In certain cases, organised groups can act as couriers.
For instance, from December 10 till December 13, 2009, a workshop organised by the campaign Directorate member will be held in Vilnius. The workshop includes 28 Belarusians, who can be couriers and take the amount of 9,000 USD (for example, up to the allowed amount of 10,000 USD) each from Lithuania to Belarus. Thus, if the money is delivered to Vilnius until December, 12, the group will be able to transport 252,000 USD to Belarus thinking that this is the money for the project they participate in.
Members of the campaign Directorate and members of their families can act as couriers until the end of 2009.
Cost: courier’s travel expenses up to 60 USD, meals for one day – 30 USD, payment for the service up to 2 percent of the amount transferred, SIM-card of a Lithuanian operator, a cheap cell phone.
Pluses: The opportunity to transport large amounts of cash (up to 200,000 USD per trip).
Minuses: Risk of disclosing the courier and loss of money.
Legalisation of money in Belarus
Legalisation of the main amount of money is implemented via distributing the rumors that the “Tell the Truth” campaign is a project sponsored by Brussels via a German partner. This is convincing, as everybody knows that there is money in Brussels but nobody knows how to get it, so there would be little doubt that somebody had managed to do so. The German partner witnesses that the campaign can not be opposed to the authority in Belarus. The rumor is “secretly” spread when employing services and communicating with third parties.
A part of the money will be legalised when implementing the delivery options “Master Card”, “Cashless Payment”, and “Partner”. The money will also be partially legalised via official loans and declaring it with a tax authority and also through fictitious contracts with companies for performance of work.
The legalised sum of money for each member of the Directorate and each candidate should be no less than $10,000.
3. Keeping the money
When keeping the money, the same system is applied as with the delivery. Horizontal ties between people are stronger and more secure than the institutional ones. So renting safety deposit boxes in Belarusian banks is not an option.
‘Safe’ – the laws of Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia allow foreigners to rent safety deposit boxes in banks. The principle of bank secrecy is applied to this information and it is not subject to disclosure. It is important that several people can have access to one safety deposit box.
How this works:
Stage 1. Renting a safety deposit box
Each of the Directorate members rents safety deposit boxes in Riga, Vilnius, and Tallinn together with a representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, giving him a right of exclusive access to the safety deposit box.
IMPORTANT: Thus, each member of the Directorate has two or three boxes in the Baltic States, which are filled in accordance with the general application for financing, and the money is withdrawn when needed by every Directorate member. When a member of the Directorate rents a safety deposit box, it is preferable that someone else from the Directorate should have access to the box in case of emergency.
Stage 2. Filling the safety deposit boxes
A representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Poland brings the necessary amount of money to Vilnius, Riga, Tallinn and fills the safety deposit box of each member of the Directorate with the amount previously specified in the claim for financing.
Stage 3. Withdrawing money from a safety deposit box
A member of the Directorate comes to the city where the money is left and takes the necessary amount from the box. After that one of the plans to deliver the money to Belarus comes into effect (see above).
Cost: a) renting safety deposit boxes in a bank for a year, b) travel expenses and accommodation for the members of the Directorate, c) travel expenses and accommodation for the representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Poland.
‘Friend’ – As previously stated, the most effective method in Belarus (taking into account the specific nature of the country) is to give the money to trusted people for keeping.
How this works: when the money arrives in Belarus, it is divided into five or more parts and is given for safekeeping to friends or, even better, to their close relatives. It is allowed to call the ‘Friend’ about the money only one time and to take the whole sum of money at once. Before that a special language used when saying that the money is needed, is discussed. It should not cause suspicions if the communication equipment is bugged. For example, “Let’s have a nice hearty dinner today somewhere away from the city centre”. When we use a ‘Friend’ on several occasions, the phrase is changed each time.
Expenses: a bottle of cognac and a chocolate bar, a Schengen visa issued for a year.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR EMPLOYERS ON BRIEFING A COURIER AND HANDLING THE MONEY IN BELARUS
(should be given orally or, even better, in writing and the document should be later destroyed).
The money that the courier is carrying belongs to a business and is its undeclarable cash profit;
the information about the exact amount of money is not given to the courier;
the courier is told when and where he is to meet the employer (THE COURIER DOES NOT KNOW HOW AND WHEN THE EMPLOYER IS GOING TO GET TO THE MEETING POINT);
the courier must cross the border without a mobile phone;
it is forbidden to inform third parties about the trip;
when the courier is in the country where he receives the money, he is forbidden from using the Internet and other means of communication and from informing third parties of his whereabouts;
below is a list of things a courier can take:
a small bag, a book, a pen, a notebook, personal belongings.
When the courier and the employer meet in a specified location:
Option No. 1
The money, which is preferably packed in a ‘belt’, is given to the courier. The way the courier placed it is checked (THE COURIER MUST NOT KNOW WHERE AND HOW THE MONEY WILL BE TAKEN FROM HIM);
The courier is given a mobile phone with one number stored in its memory. The number is provided by a foreign phone service. He is warned that he is not allowed to make any calls or send any text messages except for those indicated below. He is warned that his phone is traced and that by breaking this rule he loses his pay;
he is given a ticket for his trip back (BEFORE THAT THE COURIER DOES NOT KNOW HOW HE IS GOING TO TRAVEL BACK);
a meals pay;
the courier is briefed on what he has to do after crossing the border.
Option No. 2
The courier is given a mobile phone with one number stored in its memory. The number is provided by a foreign phone service. He is warned that he is not allowed to make any calls or send any text messages except for those indicated below. He is warned that his phone is traced and that by breaking this rule he loses his pay. In the phone’s memory there is also the number of the luggage locker at a railway station where the money is kept, preferably packed in a ‘belt’, and the code. In the locker there is also a ticket for his trip back (BEFORE THAT THE COURIER DOES NOT KNOW HOW HE IS GOING TO TRAVEL BACK);
a meals pay;
the courier is briefed on what he has to do after crossing the border.
If the courier crosses the border successfully:
he sends a text message to the number stored in the phone’s memory, saying that everything is fine; he gets further instructions in reply. In any case he checks his luggage for foreign objects (a GPS navigation device): if he locates an accidental object, he should take it out of his bag and put it in any other inconspicuous place in the vehicle, with no people noticing it.
If the operation fails:
the courier should switch off his phone;
when asked whose money this is, he should say that a Lithuanian man he met in a restaurant (the Lithuanian sat down at his table) asked him to carry the money and that he had to leave it in an automatic luggage locker at a station. He was paid to carry the money.
Instructions given if the courier has crossed the border successfully: the courier is told where he has to get off, he is met and given a password (which is chosen at the discretion of the employer); the courier hands over the money and the mobile phone; after the meeting the courier returns to the vehicle and resumes his trip; the courier does not know when he will be contacted next; the mobile phone is switched off, the battery is taken out, the SIM card is thrown away.
From an analytical note
The work of the “Tell the Truth” Directorate is coordinated from abroad by the so-called ‘minor office’. Its decisions are communicated to the Directorate through A. Feduta, who knows all the members of the office personally. One of the members of the ‘minor office’, a German, who calls himself Rafael M., regularly meets the members of the Directorate in the countries bordering Belarus. Meetings are called by A. Feduta and Skype is used for emergency contacts between the members of the Directorate and Rafael M.
Below there is a fragment of secret correspondence between Rafael M. and the “Tell the Truth” Directorate, “We have an offer. We can help you to organise a number of meetings with people who will help you. Prepare a letter about that.
We will try to get you in contact with the Head and also with some influential people in the Parliament. It is very important ‘cause these people have the resources you are going to need after December 19. Once you’ve established the contacts you will be able to organise those resources. Now the names: Wojciech Paczynski (CASE), Jerzy Kozminski (Polish-American Freedom Foundation), Agnieszka Komarowska (Stefan Batory Foundation), Jan Malinski (Warsaw University of Eastern Europe). I’ve sent this to Sasha (Feduta) as well. Write a message and try to mail it at the beginning of the week. Those people will help you with the PR campaign.”
From an analytical note
The leader of the Young Front D. Dashkevich received USD 70, 000 from Statkevich to organise “fighting squads” that were to take part in the action at the square. Together with A. Palazhenko, D. Dashkevich appropriated part of these funds as well as funds received earlier from a foreign non-commercial organisation. He used the money to buy a Chrysler, which was registered as belonging of A. Palazhenko so as not to discredit D. Dashkevich.
On the very eve of the elections the head of the Right Alliance organisation Yuri Karetnikov made several visits to various regions of the country to meet with local representatives. His primary goal was to mobilise as many activists from radical structures as possible for the mass protests in Minsk on December 19, 2010.
Karetnikov received 15, 000 USD to support the actions of the fighting squad at the square. Also, members of the Right Alliance were promised 50 USD for every 4 hours of their participation in the mass protests on December 19 and the following actions. If detained, dismissed from job or expelled from university, the activists were to receive financial aid and assistance in getting a new job or entering a university.
It was supposed that on December 19, 2010 at Oktyabrskaya Square the candidates would set up a Decision-Making Committee to coordinate the protest action. Specific steps of the protesters were to be dependent upon the number of people gathered at Oktyabrskaya Square. In case the crowd was large enough “they had to be led to some other place.” Accordingly, several variants of the march were considered: to the President’s Administration, Belarusian TV and Radio Company or some other state-run media company, or to important governmental institutions.
As he talked to the activists of the BCD and Young Front on the eve of the protest action, P. Severinets insisted on their bringing crowbars to the square to “pick out the paving tiles and throw them at the riot police (OMON).” He also strongly maintained the necessity of staging direct clashes with the law enforcement officers, seizing government buildings, etc: “in short, the point is to be active and after the action Minsk should look like it did in 1943…” And this person dares to state himself to “adhere to Christian values.”
Activist of the “Tell the Truth” campaign A.Yanushev spent 4, 000 USD to procure equipment necessary for the campaign’s “squad”.
From an analytical note:
“Traditionally, the plans of the West rely heavily on the activities of special services. As regards the current election campaign, it is necessary to point out that there are documents confirming numerous instances of our country being visited by foreign intelligence officers and their agents. For example, on his stay in Belarus N – an agent from a Western European country – actively collected materials on the “undemocratic nature” of the elections, was present at the scenes of unauthorised mass actions, observed the actions of the law enforcement bodies and transmitted the information he received back to his country in real time.
From the materials of the State Frontier Committee
“On December 15 a group of 5 people, residents from the town of Rovno, was detected at the Mokrany checkpoint at the Belarus-Ukraine border. They tried to enter Belarus by car as if with the aim of taking part in a “training workshop”. Then it turned out there was no any workshops of that kind. They had warm clothes, tents, sleeping bags, photo and video equipment. The addresses of their destination points in Belarus turned out to be fake. They also had insignificant amounts of cash on them – no more than 50 USD – and were going to stay in Belarus till December 21, 2010.
Later, a similar group of 4 residents of Ivano-Frankovsk region was denied entry. They all came from the same village and claimed they did not know each other. When questioned, they could not clearly state the aim of their visit and were also going to stay in the country till December 20. Apart from warm clothes they had similar sets of knives, 30 in total.
Typically, these groups carried out multiple attempts of entering Belarus later at other checkpoints and on different dates, showing some persistence.
The Belarus-Poland border. Two young people were denied entry. They had flags, tents, warm clothes and were clearly going to be at the “ploshcha”.
…At the beginning of November operational agencies of the frontier service received intelligence information on a group of demolition experts from Asian countries (outside the CIS) that planned to enter Belarus and to organise a number of terror attacks on the elections day. The group intended to act with the assistance of the ethnic community in Minsk by secretly engaging its potential.
On December 19 the frontier services on the Belarus-Lithuania border detained a courier (Igor Vladislavovich Semeniako, born in 1986) carrying about 7 thousand doses. The drugs were to be delivered to Minsk on the same day and distributed among the participants of the protest actions.
A group of 7 people was detected at the Mokhro checkpoint on December 13, 2010 trying to transport a smoke flare, an electric shocker, 5 rubber truncheons and one slingshot to Belarus. It was established that the above-mentioned individuals had taken an active part in street actions during the so-called “orange revolution” in Ukraine; on the eve of the 2006 Presidential elections in Belarus they received special training in using force to counteract actions of law enforcement officers, provided by activists of the Zubr movement.
On December 16, 2010 two citizens of Poland (born in 1986 and 1988, respectively) were detained on a train crossing the “Brest-Tsentralny” checkpoint. They carried 2 boxes of traumatic rounds for smoothbore weapon (5 rounds per box), an electric shocker and side arms. When asked, the abovementioned individuals were unable to provide a clear answer as to the aim of their visit to Belarus, referred to non-existing addresses in Minsk. It was later established that they were active participants of the anti-globalist movement, took part in protest actions and clashes with the police in West European countries.
On December 17, 2010 Belarusian frontier services denied entry to a Russian mini-van with 12 activists of the radical organisation Oborona (Defence). It was found that the passengers of the vehicle were carrying 2 telescopic metal rods and brass knuckles, a number of weapon-like items made of metal, 6 tents and 14 sleeping bags as well as an official uniform of an officer of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Belarus”.
From an analytical note
“From all the candidates for presidency N.Statkevich took the most aggressive position. Under the preliminary arrangement with the "BelSat" TV channel (Poland) he provocatively announced the previously fabricated results of the exit-polls (the President in Office supposedly won only 31 % of votes) and called all those who gathered “to go to A.Lukashenko and ask him to vacate the residence and concede the power”.
From an analytical note
“We should turn a special attention to the participation of foreign representatives in the "ploshcha" action, because thanks to the actions of special services every minute of the chronology of events is restored.
It is necessary to notice that possessing the information that separate destructive forces planned some provocative actions, everything possible was done to persuade the foreign diplomats to refrain from participating in the meeting of opponents to the authorities as it could be regarded by their participants as an expression of direct support of their actions.
On December 16, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belarus was informed about the undesirability of participation of diplomats in the unauthorised action according to the legislation. Law enforcement bodies noted that the most radical representatives discussed the questions of the possible organisation of actions which could be carried out during the unauthorised "ploshcha" action and which could be aimed at the aggravation of the situation and provocation of clashes with the law enforcement bodies by use of pyrotechnic devices. Among those who organised these forceful actions there is one of the candidates for the presidency of Belarus and his registered agents. It is thus planned to present the demonstrators' actions as the result of provocation of special services during "the peaceful" action and to use the occured panic as to achieve their purposes”.
From an operative note
“During the telephone conversation of the employee of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belarus Malinovsky with the German ambassador K.Weil, Malinovsky brought the information about N.Statkevich's provocative actions who planned to lead the crowd to the President’s Administration building. In view of the possible contacts of Statkevich's party with the German colleagues, Malinovsky addressed the ambassador with the request to influence the Belarusian oppositionist. Weil noted that “appeals can remain peaceful” and then he indicated that “he won't interfere in this situation”.
“Despite the warning of possible pogroms and mass riots, employees of the embassies of the UK, Sweden, Latvia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Bulgaria planned “to carry out supervision” of the action in the Oktyabrskaya Square on December 19.
Moreover, at the given stage some diplomats represented themselves as "lawyers" of organisers and potential participants of the unauthorised action. It is necessary to specially note that taking into account the vigorous activity of the ambassador of Sweden to Minsk S.Eriksson on his developing the closest relations with the individual persons bearing extremist intentions, he and some his colleague-diplomats should provide "the international" backing to "the Government of National Rescue” and help justify pogroms and provocations.
The participation of diplomats in the unauthorised action was perceived by the crowd as support of their actions and urged those especially zealous to take the most resolute actions”.
From an operative note. The chronicle
At 22.05 A.Sannikov called on the protesters to go to the Government Residence and “negotiate with the authorities” and then the crowd moved forward to the central entrance of the building. At 22.21 the protesters managed to open one door and began to get inside, with A.Sannikov crying out, “They have just opened the Government door to us, we have been waiting for it for 16 years. Here there are a lot of journalists, our friends, let us come together, we are making history”.
At 22.30 the law-enforcement bodies started the operation on suppression of the illegal action by separating the crowd and isolating the most active group. At 22.50 G.Kostusev called on the young people «to hold the fort up to the end».
Part of the protesters tried to get into the Government Residence through the broken door.
The forces of special divisions of law-enforcement bodies carried out “the cleanup operation” of Independence Square from 23.05 to 23.30.
The participants of the demonstration were disseminated. The largest group of 500 people moved towards Oktyabrskaya Square, however it was blocked and separated.
During the dissemination of the crowd part of young people tried to get rid of the means of street fight (armature, iron rods, and other subjects for mutilation), throwing them out in the place of the action as they were going away”.
From operative materials
(December 19, 23.20)
A.Lebedko calls the head of Vilnius representative office of the International Republican Institute (IRI, USA).
Lebedko, “Statkevich did it. He declared expressly, “Now we'll go into the building”. And so they did. They approached it and it was clear that all the doors there were closed”.
From operative materials
Fragment of the telephone conversation between D.Sadovsky, co-chairman of the BCD, an active worker of the staff of the ex-candidate V.Rymashevsky, and the Gomel BCD supporter K.Zhukovsky (12/20/2010 — 1:03:40 AM).
Zh: How are you there? Is everything OK with you?
S: There's nothing OK here. It is just terrible...
Zh: Just tell me one thing. Who's breaking the doors? Were they provokers, right?
S: No, Kastus, unfortunately, they were not provokers.
Zh: And if we had not broken the doors and would just put up tents, everything would be different, right? Or they would chase them anyway?
S: I don't know. I think that would be different.
From operative materials
“On December 20 in his conversation with A.Milinkevich S.Kaliakin said, “We should emphasise that this action was planned by the authorities. We need to think how to win it back politically. It is necessary to write it off to the authorities. Writing it off to ourselves is simply idiocy”. As he said, “those who are in prison should assert that it is provocation of the authorities. It is important to do so for the West. It is necessary to pick up photos, hold a press conference and require investigations”.
They stormed the Government Residence
The list of active participants of unauthorised protest action on 19.12.2010
(falling within article 293 (“Organisation of Mass Riots”) and 339 ("Hooliganism") of the Criminal Code)
1. Vinogradov Pavel Yurievich, born 1988, registered at the address: Minsk, Gazety "Zvyazda" Avenue... Activist of the "European Belarus" movement, one of the coordinators of the “Tell the Truth” civil campaign of Frunzensky District. As a "Jeans" movement activist in 2008 he participated in the activity of the so-called "striking force" of the youth radical politised groupings which held street protest actions in an aggressive way with the open disobedience to law enforcement bodies. Regularly participates in street rallies.
Participated in the pogroms, attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, using household items (a hammer), broke windows, attacked law enforcement officers, incited the crowd to act.
2. Gnedchik Oleg Andreevich, born 1986, registered at the address: Minsk, Panchenko St.... One of the coordinators of the TT CC in Frunzensky District of Minsk. An activist of the Young Front. Regularly participates in street rallies. In May 2006, participated in workshops and combat training sessions in a forest-based camp in western Ukraine, organised by the Ukrainian nationalist association “Youth National Congress”. In 2006, he was sentenced to 1 year of correctional works under Article 205 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Belarus.
Participated in the pogroms, attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, broke windows, attacked law enforcement officers, incited the crowd to act.
3. Likhovid Nikita Yurievich, born 1990, registered at the address: Minsk, Shugaeva St.... An activist of the movement "For Freedom". Participated in a workshop on the topic of “Leadership - the Impact of Youth” in Birstonas (Lithuania) organised with support of the Swedish Foundation “SILCA”. Was penalised under the administrative law.
Participated in the pogroms, attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, broke windows, attacked law enforcement officers using household items (sticks, rods), incited the crowd to act.
4. Parfenkov Vasily Petrovich, born 1983, registered at the address: Minsk, Tikotskogo St.... A supporter of the TT CC. From 2001 till 2005, he was a member of “Zubr” and the Young Front. From October 2004 till January 2005, he participated in the election campaign of the Ukrainian presidential candidate Viktor Yushchenko (the collection of signatures, protests, including the Maidan) in Kiev. Participated in capturing Yanukovich’s Office together with UNA UNSO members with whom he is on friendly terms.
Participated in the pogroms, attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, broke windows, attacked law enforcement officers using household items, incited the crowd to act.
5. Fedorkevich Oleg Vladimirovich, born 1961, registered at the address: Minsk, Puteiskiy Lane ... A former member of the BPF.
While being in the state of alcohol abuse, he participated in the pogroms, was one of the most active rioters. Attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, broke windows, attacked law enforcement officers, posed before the cameras, incited the crowd to act, shouted threats to the authorities.
6. Khomichenko Vladimir Nikolaevich, born 1986, registered at the address: Slutsk, Urochishche Puporova St.... Politically unaffiliated.
While being in the state of alcohol abuse, he participated in the pogroms, was one of the most active rioters. Attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, broke windows, doors, using household items (sticks, rods), attacked law enforcement officers, posed before the cameras, incited the crowd to act, shouted threats to the authorities.
7. Apishev Dmitry Alexandrovich, born 1973, registered at the address: Minsk, Yanki Mavra St... An activist of the TT CC. Actively participated in the events at Independence Square.
8. Novik Dmitry Leonidovich, born 1981, a security guard at the UAE Embassy, Minsk. An activist of the "European Belarus".
Participated in the pogroms, attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, broke windows, doors.
9. Kviatkevich Alexander Alexandrovich , born 1987, registered at the address: Minsk, Voronianskogo St.... An activist of the TT CC.
He was in the front rows of those participating in the pogroms. Attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, broke glass, doors.
10. Klaskovski Alexander Alexandrovich, born 1978, Rokossovskogo St... A former employee of Leninsky District Department of Internal Affairs.
While being in the state of alcohol abuse, he participated in the pogroms, attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, broke windows, doors.
11. Loban Vladimir Vladimirovich, born 1988, Verkhnedvinsk, Pervomaiskaya St, a worker at GSRIK Ltd. An active participant in the "European Belarus".
Attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, broke windows, doors. Attacked law enforcement officers, incited the crowd to act. Attempted to get hold of police special gear to use in the riot.
12. Novitsky Leonid Alexandrovich, born 1973, registered at the address: Borisov, Normandy-Neman St... a “Jeans” member.
Resisted the police.
13. Vasilevich Ilya Leonidovich, born 1991, registered at the address: Baranovichi, Domashevichskaya St...
Attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, broke windows, doors. Attacked law enforcement officers, incited the crowd to act.
14. Vasilevsky Alexander Vladimirovich, born 1985, registered at the address: Minsk, Logoiski Avenue...
Actively participated in the pogroms, attempted to seize an administrative building - the Government Residence, broke windows, doors, attacked law enforcement officers using household items.
15. Breus Artiom Yurievich, born 1983, Minsk, Dolgobrodskaya St... Unemployed, a Russian citizen, an Estonian residence permit.
Actively particpated in clashes with the police.
16. Gaponov Ivan Igorevich, born in 1988, Pukhovichi District, the town of Svisloch, Stroitelei St... Unemployed, a Russian citizen, a Belarusian residence permit. A “Jeans” activist.
Actively participated in clashes with the riot police (OMON).
17. Medved Dmitri Leonidovich, born 1990, Minsk, Karbysheva St...
Actively participated in clashes with the riot police (OMON).
18. Pozniak Andrei Alexandrovich, born 1977, Zhodino, Gagarina St... A member of the Young Front.
Punched and kicked law enforcement officers.
19. Kovalenko Vsevolod Gennadievich, born 1961. Registered at the address: Minsk, Cherviakova St... Unemployed.
Actively participated in clashes with the riot police (OMON).
20. Beliaev Alexander Leonidovich , born 1982, Minsk District, the village of Koraleshchevichi, Kommunisticheskaya St.... CJSC Beltelekabel, a press operator.
Actively participated in clashes with the riot police (OMON).
The police are now working to establish the identity of other people engaged in the pogroms.