Andrei Poczobut. Portrait against a lattice

Society

One leader of the Union of Poles to characterize his companions: who has the right rod, and who — "not a fighter," he said. I was sitting next to. So Andrew Pochobut — just the "fighter" of those on whom rests the organization, which the authorities refuse to recognize. But it's going to be judged for the yearning for freedom of speech, as well as the area.
 

On the wall of Hrodna prison recently appeared homemade sign: the historical and cultural value, the ensemble of the former Jesuit monastery, "residential building", XVI-XVIII-XIX centuries. What about "living" said too loudly in the chamber with the prisoners. For very tall wall in the detention center held a journalist Andrzej Poczobut, he was charged — "insulting the president" and "slander" on it. Now Andrew is reading lists of the criminal case. Its made of eight publications in the "Gazeta Wyborcza", which the journalist is a reporter. But that's not all: the KGB searched the net and admitted the two texts Pochobut — with the "Belarusian partisan" and his blog on livejournal. President criticized, but did not mean to offend, a colleague told me when I was still at large.
 
In fact, to judge by Andrei Poczobut want for a major newspaper coverage of the realities of a neighboring state. Send to Warsaw censor his regime could not set the "Gazeta Wyborcza" warning, suspend the issue of how to practice the Ministry of Information, also completely unrealistic. Then what?

Deny printing as this is done sometimes? But the Polish publishers are not afraid of the Belarusian authorities are afraid of local. The conundrum posed Pochobut mode! Dove times accreditation ceased to give her, began to warn that works, they say, "illegal", the word in every way tried to silence a journalist. Ignoring that the publication in the "Wyborcza" about the events in Belarus were not only his personal point of view, but also position the editors. Navazhusya say it coincides with the look and the rest of Europe by the Belarusian regime. Not for nothing did the deputies from different countries require release of Andrei Poczobut from prison.
 
I do not know how he finds himself today, but the beginning of the case seems to me it is December 19, when he was arrested on the Square in the capital. Had time to inform the office, he told me later. Night was kept frozen in a paddy wagon, but unexpectedly released the next day in court. Managed. Helped edition, he said to me then, did the steps. But over the area began to question the KGB, and tried to do it all at once: they stopped near the house, put him in the car. The fact that Andrew Pochobut a mission wording, when he was arrested, of course, was not interested bodies. After the interrogation, he turns to the prosecutor: threatened and hit on the head. Minor injuries to the head is confirmed … And then in the capital suddenly decide wrongly released journalist Poczobut December 20, not punished. Cause on the court and fined for Square. However, someone is irritation: not enough! New trial. Poczobut fine substitute for the arrest, and he finds himself on Akrestin. A meanwhile some translations from the Polish language texts written by him to the idea of a criminal case …
 

Andrei Poczobut somehow interested in a book about the history of the local prison, written by a prison librarian. The journalist bought the book and now know the details of where it is held, and how to Grodno "alma mater" — the famous Jesuit College in ON kingship did jail. Collegium existed at the monastery was surrounded by a large masonry them from the street. Behind prison walls today stone Catholic Curia, and Cathedral, along with the prison they occupy a quarter. Catholic church of the tall and large, there are constantly praying for priests and the faithful. On its tower, which is close to the prison cells, the clock tower, he was five years old, the time measured out the bell that should hear the prisoners Andrei Poczobut too. Do not think that because of this it is easier, but feel close church — it's better than to be heard at all in the deep stone bag. It seems that the journalist will write more about Hrodna prison: a view from the inside.
 
I like the position of Andrei Poczobut, which is not saying we're the Poles, and all. No, he uses the Belarusian language, has been blogging on the internet in Belarusian. One day I asked him, you are frequent in Poland, there is a beautiful city, preserved architecture of old, Polish-known masters of restoration, which city a model for you where you want to return again and again? He laughed and said that the Grodno — his home and favorite city, your own, no matter what he had seen others that are impressive, attract many tourists.
 

Rally in memory of the victims of the Poles after the liberation campaign of the Red Army in 1939.

We still did not know when I met Pochobut in the late 1990s. The administrative judge founder of the Union of Poles Tadeusz Gawin, as far as I remember, "for unauthorized picket." Andrei Poczobut recently finished law school. Classmates who were quick to get to the court, who is the prosecutor who is in the "authorities". He was interested in both. On the eve of the 2001 elections in Grodno was keen on one journalist's pen more.
 

Andrei Poczobut looks large, even monumental, inside, possible guess a lot of energy, he loves to acute situations, is not afraid to take risks. He put the printing sheet to ban travel to Poland, he says, it is illegal and is still going. Which only chambers, offices he did not sit: Not only in Grodno, Minsk, but in Shchuchyn, Lida. In Grodno even two "arrests" in the offices of the now destroyed, the conditions they had the most primitive, and there kept and Pochobut, and others who are not willing to bow to the regime.
 
He could stay in Poland, but came back, he was soon arrested, locked up. At the last meeting with colleagues, we have gathered to express their support for the (criminal case has become a fact), he tried to be calm, level-headed. Me needed to record the voices of people most Pochobut, did not notice that the camera's ring sprung out of focus pictures of Andrew.
 

Sergei Ostrovtsov, writer and journalist

All the portraits on the background grid

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