Monday, March 07, 2011

Voina Group Activists Attacked and Beaten In St. Petersburg

March 4, 2011

On March 3 in St. Petersburg around 5 p.m. three activists of the art
group Voina - Leonid Nikolayev, Oleg Vorotnikov, and Natalya Sokol - have
been attacked and severely beaten by seven plainclothes policemen. The
attackers reportedly shouted that they were from the city’s criminal
investigation department.

Vorotnikov and Nikolayev held a press conference earlier on March 3 in
which they told journalists about the poor conditions they faced in
Moscow’s pretrial detention center.

As a result Oleg Vorotnikov received bruises, Natalia Sokol got a serious
hand injury, Leonid Nikolayev - a head injury. A 2-year-old Kasper also

Fragment from Oleg Vorotnikov’s story:

When we left the press conference in the Ligovsky prospect, we noticed
that we were followed by a group of typical thugs. We observed that
those were clearly anti-extremism officers… One police officer
attacked Lenya from behind. They waved their IDs but we couldn’t
examine them. They pushed baby pram away and hit Kasper against his
face causing a bruise on his left chick. Two others knocked Kozlyenok
down into the paddle and started kicking her. They injured her hand
very seriously. I managed to free myself from the officers who were
holding me and covered Kozlyenok with my body. The blows rained
against my back and head. Kozlyenok’s face was already bashed. What’s
more when they dragged her by hair, they pulled out one of her braids.
The officers were trying to take away a camera from her. But she held
it tightly. Activist Lyubka seized one of the officers and he bit her

The police officers managed to confiscate a camera memory card. The
artists were delivered to the traumatology station.

No comments: