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Belarussian journalist says KGB attempted to recruit her as informant

Journalist Natallya Radzina has alleged that that KGB officers had subjected her to psychological pressure and attempted to recruit her as an informant while she was in the KGB detention center in Minsk, according to

At a news conference held on Monday, presidential candidate Ales Mikhalevich, who was released from the jail on his own recognisance on February 19, three weeks later than Ms. Radzina, accused the KGB of torturing him and forcing him to agree to act as its informant.

The details: [Link]

"I immediately believed Mikhalevich," Ms. Radzina said. "The attitude toward women was more lenient. However, judging by the sounds behind the wall, men were maltreated. I could hear banging, the sound of truncheons and rude orders. Indeed, even I was taken out for questioning in handcuffs a few times and was told to lie face down and so on. It is also true that the cells are cold and have no toilets."

According to Ms. Radzina, she was told one-on-one that unless she agreed to cooperate with the KGB, she would be imprisoned for "five to eight years" and "have no children."

"I got off the hook only because I mentioned the offer in the presence of the investigator and my lawyer and asked why a journalist was being threatened with a lengthy prison sentence," she said.

Former presidential candidate Vital Rymashewski told BelaPAN that he had not been subjected to the abuse described by Mr. Mikhalevich. "However, it is obvious that the KGB applies different methods to different people," he said. "It was courageous of Mikhalevich to reveal the conditions on which he had been freed."

Mr. Rymashewski was released from the KGB jail on his own recognizance on January 1.

Date posted: March 1, 2011 Last modified: May 23, 2018 Total views: 104