Foundation stories

The case of Khoroshin, beaten by the security forces, is being considered under universal jurisdiction

In a series of terrible Belarusian news, there is a story that pierced everyone's heart: the owner of a flower shop was kidnapped by the security forces, beaten to a pulp, and he was taken to the hospital. Today Maxim Khoroshin and his family are safe, and his case is being investigated by General Prosecutor's Office and Lithuanian Criminal Police.

This story has an almost happy end thanks to the well-coordinated work of several organizations: BYSOL, Probono, the Belarusian House of Human Rightsnamed after Zvozskov and the Tikhonovskaya Headquarters.

Maxim was especially remembered by Belarusians for distributing flowers to participants in women's marches. And he himself took part in actions, drove the car with a huge flag: “I just was with them like such a thorn or like a red rag. They told me about this during the arrest: we are already very tired of you ”.

Maxim didn’t even believe at once that the guy was actually being attacked by the security forces: “After three punches in the face, I realized that this was not a prank, and later I ended up in my own pool of blood on the ground”.

Doctors took Khoroshinn out of the Pervomaisky DDIA, and then they drove him in a wheelchair — it was hard for the guy to walk on his own. He stayed in the hospital for about a week, and there he realized that the only way out for him was to flee the country.

“I received threats on my phone number that they did not talk to me. I understood that I urgently needed to take my family and leave. And I ran right in my nightie. I just walked out through the backyard, removed the IV, left the catheter, I sat down, and drove off. Once in Lithuania, the most important thing is that my family feels safe, ”said Maksim.

Khoroshin appealed to the Belarusian law enforcement agencies, and the investigators even promised that they would find those who beat him, but Maxim does not believe in this: “I was funny, honestly. It is clear that I will receive a formal reply that no one beat me, that I stumbled, fell on the bench ”.

Maxim did not give up trying to achieve justice. Svetlana Tikhanovskaya's headquarters, Human Rights House and BYSOL Foundation, together with Lithuanian lawyers, helped to file a complaint on the fact of torture. A criminal case was opened, which was taken up by the General Prosecutor's Office and the Criminal Police of Lithuania.

“I was very lucky to have all the evidence on my hands. There is a video of the detention, which was filmed by the tenants of my house. I fully saw the faces that beat me. All bruises and injuries are recorded, there are medical certificates, ”he said.

Khoroshin knows that many speculate on his story: “I would like to emphasize once again that three organizations helped me in filing a criminal case in Lithuania. These are the Svetlana Tikhonovskaya headquarters, the Human Rights House, and the BYSOL Foundation. These organizations helped me exclusively. I am personally responsible for my specific case, so as not to speculate on my topic, that some other third-party organizations that publicly, unfortunately, declare their involvement, assistance in my move, or legal assistance. Therefore, it is important to know. "

Maxim admits that he has not yet fully coped with the trauma he received in the summer: “Two months have already passed, but I still work with a psychologist. And honestly, it helps a lot to recover morally and to recover both me and my family, who became unwitting witnesses of this incident ”.

From his experience, he advised those who found themselves in a similar situation not to withdraw into themselves and record what happened in the Unified Crime Registration Book: “It is quite simple to do this since it can be done both anonymously and openly. And there is a resource Probono.by where you can find a free psychologist for yourself who will provide you with professional psychological assistance ”.

“I want to be an example for those who today are wary or afraid to talk about what they have committed against him, illegal actions,” — says Maxim. — I am ready to actively respond to everyone. And there have already been many such cases, when I sent people, as it were, to where they would receive professional assistance. Therefore, I am all for it.

We want to remind you: if a similar story happened to you if you were detained, beaten, suffered from illegal actions of the security forces, you can send your statement to the Crime Registration Book anonymously or tell about it.

If you were fired for political reasons or were expelled from the university for participating in peaceful protests, contact BYSOL.

Support the families of political prisoners

In Belarus, more than 700 people ended up in prisons because they did not want to turn the blind eye to the terrible actions of the authorities. Support is needed not only for them but also for their families.