Case of the Union of Liberation of Belarus
The Case of the Union of Liberation of Belarus was a political and criminal case initiated by the GPU of the Belarusian Soviet Republic against several Belarusian scientists and culture activists. The case formed part of a wave of Soviet repressions in Belarus in 1929 - 1931. The GPU accused the victims of membership in a (presumably non-existent) anti-Soviet organization called the Union of Liberation of Belarus (Belarusian: Саюз вызвалення Беларусі). Most of the accused were killed, or expelled to far-away regions of the USSR.
The case started with the arrest of the editor Piotr Ilyuchonak on February 17, 1930. During the spring and summer of 1930 108 people were arrested. At the beginning the GPU saw Vaclau Lastouski (former prime minister of the Belarusian People's Republic), Aliaksandr Tsvikevich and Arkadz Smolich (former agriculture minister of the Belarusian People's Republic), as leaders of the organization. Later Aliaksandr Adamovich (a Belarusian nationalist communist politician), Anton Balitski (statesman and writer), Piotr Ilyuchonak and Dzmitry Pryshchepau were viewed as such. People like the prominent poets Janka Kupala and Jakub Kolas or the first president of the Belarusian Science Academy Usievalad Ihnatouski were at certain stages accused of being members of the ULB.
All those arrested, except for 18 people, were sentenced to different terms of deportation. Usievalad Ihnatouski committed suicide on February 4, 1931. The supposed leaders of the ULB were sentenced to 10 years of deportation while most of the other members were deported to inner regions of the USSR for 5 years.
In 1937—1941 the case was heard again; many of the convicts were executed, some sent to concentration camps. In 1937-1939 many of the GPU executives who had worked on the case were also themselves executed. Another wave of repressions occurred in 1949-1952 against those former ULB membership suspects who were still alive at the time.
References [ edit ]
- The list is not full and includes only 98 people
Sources [ edit ]
- Аркуш А. Рызыкоўная барацьба намэнклятуры // Наша Ніва, No.7.
- Сідарэвіч А. Трыюмвіры, або Помнік камісарам // Наша Ніва, No.13.