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Belarus’ Investigative Committee expects answer to query sent to Pavel Durov

Mass riots happened in Belarus in August 2020. They were accompanied by pogroms, acts of arson, and violent actions against law enforcement personnel. Carrying out their duty to protect public order, law enforcement personnel suppressed illegal actions, including by employing special gear.

In order to put psychological pressure and other kinds of pressure on law enforcement personnel and representatives of government agencies, a number of Telegram channels were created where personal data (names, addresses, telephone numbers) of representatives of the specified professions were published. These publications were accompanied by calls for taking violent actions against the personnel, their children, and close relatives.

As a result of detailed analysis and comparison of destructive Telegram channels in the territory of our country with similar (blocked) channels in Russia their complete similarity was determined with regard to the aggressive rhetoric and calls for violent actions against citizens of Belarus and their families.

Taking into account the precedent of blocking of such channels in the territory of the Russian Federation, the Investigative Committee of the Republic of Belarus has sent the following query to Pavel Durov and his team:

Bearing in mind “the terms of use directly forbid public calls for violence” and “the rules apply to all violators regardless of their political views” the Investigative Committee expects Telegram Messenger Inc. to produce an objective evaluation of the query sent to the company.

Information and Public Relations Department