An 18-year-old orphan committed suicide in Minsk, who was prosecuted over protests. He blamed the Investigative Committee for his death

According to the Belarusian human rights center Viasna, 17-year-old (according to the Investigative Committee, 18-year-old) Dmitry Stakhovsky committed suicide in Minsk. …

The information about Stakhovsky’s suicide to the Belarusian version of the Mediazona was confirmed by his girlfriend. “Today the police department called and said that Dima was no longer there,” said the girl, whose name “Mediazona” did not give.

After Stakhovsky’s death, a post appeared on his VKontakte page (where the young man was registered under the name Dmitry Merkulov), which says that the reason for the suicide was a criminal case and pressure from the security forces.

If you are reading this, then I am not alive.

The blame for that was the Investigative Committee. It is no longer a secret that I had criminal article 293, part 2. In short, for the rallies. If they did not continue to pressure me morally, I think I would not have decided on such a terrible act as suicide. But my strength was running out. And as you can see, I failed. Yes, many people have told me, do not worry, everything will be fine. Do not think about the bad things. Bad thoughts away. However, it is easy to say until you yourself find yourself in such a position.

I regret very much that I have lived so little. But a couple of years ago, I was making plans for the future, that I would go abroad again, live and work there. But life is so unpredictable. Or do you think I would ever think that I would be faced with such a choice? A tough choice. Therefore, I cannot say that suicide is the solution to all your problems. No friends. This is not the right choice. This is the most terrible choice. Live. Life should be appreciated. You will definitely not have it one and the other.

At the end of my suicide note, I want to express my deep gratitude to my friends, acquaintances and just those people who I met on the way of my short life. And also thanks to those people who have helped me over the years. You are all incredible and I have always loved everyone. He loved to help and do good, so that when leaving for the next world, leave at least something of himself. At least a piece of kindness.

Be empathetic and generally. Live positive. <…> (spelling and punctuation preserved, – Meduza’s note).

According to Vesna, Stakhovsky was an orphan and lived in a hostel. It was the hostel staff who pointed to him as a participant in the protests, after which he became a defendant in the case of mass riots. On the afternoon of May 25 – a few hours before his death – Stakhovsky was under interrogation in this case, Viasna reports.

At the same time, an unnamed friend of the deceased told the newspaper “Nasha Niva” that Stakhovsky was settled in the hostel after the initiation of the case. “[He] said that he did not want to go to jail and therefore would commit suicide. At first, we treated this with a smile, but then we realized that it’s not funny. We supported him as best we could, ”said a friend.

Investigative Committee of Belarus confirmed the death of Stakhovsky. According to the department, the posthumous examination showed the concentration of alcohol in his blood at 2.4 ppm . The Investigative Committee also confirmed that Stakhovsky was a suspect in the case of mass riots, but stressed that the investigative actions with him were carried out in compliance with the law and in the presence of a lawyer.

The leader of the Belarusian opposition Svetlana Tikhanovskaya made a statement on the death of Stakhovsky . “We, Belarusians, can no longer save Dima. But we must save nine million people, we must save ourselves as a nation. So that such a horror will never happen again, ”she said.

(c)MEDUZA 2021

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