The Executive Committe has decided to start a solidarity fund that will be in immediate function to support Free Theatre Belarus to continue their work and fight for freedom and justice in Belarus.
We ask everyone who would like to support the organisation to make a contribution, big or small. The fund is managed by TEH Coordination Office in collaboration with Free Theatre Belarus and monitored by the Executive Committee of Trans Europe Halles. We will collaborate with freeDimensional
& the Creative Resistance Fund who immediately promised to ship in a contribution and to mobilise organisations in the US to support the fund.
Please mark your contribution "Solidarity Fund Belarus Free Theatre"
Account name:Trans Europe Halles
SWIFT CODE: HANDSESS,
Mass arrests in Minsk in the aftermath of the presidential election
- Belarus Free Theatre’s Natalya Kolyada released on bail
This Sunday, December 19, 2010, up to a thousand men and women were arrested and jailed in Minsk, Belarus, in a violent dispersal of the protest against the latest presidential elections of Belarus. President Lukashenko, in power since 1994, was re-elected with almost 80% in the vote which international monitors, such as the OSCE criticized as flawed.
Among the arrested was Natalya Kolyada, Director of Belarus Free Theatre (TEH Friend organisation), who has been using the stage to fight for freedom of expression and democracy over the last 6 years. The company is touring worldwide with huge success, but are under constant harassment by the Belarusian authorities, as is their audience.
Natalya Kolyada was released on bail after 14 hours and shortly after told the News agency Reuters that "They (the KGB) are cleansing the city." She also spoke to Index on Censorship on Monday afternoon, about the conditions in the jail. During her detention she was not allowed water, food or sleep. Those detained had to stay standing in freezing prison corridors and were fingerprinted and filmed.
The TEH Coordination Office has tried to reach Natalya without success. According to news reports, and information messages coming from the Fans of Free Theatre Facebook group she has gone underground together with her husband and co-funder of the Belarus Free Theatre, Nikolai Khalezin.