Investigations carried out by Belarusian People's Tribunal, recording of V. Zaitsev, the Taraikovsky case
  • Section 7 of the Alpha Group
  • The Taraikovsky case


Section 7 of the Alpha Group

Belarusian People’s Tribunal publishes the audio file, secretly recorded on April 11, 2012 in the office of the State Security Committee of the Republic of Belarus (KGB) chairman. The recording discloses a conversation about commencement of activities of the secret Section 7 of KGB Alpha Group.

According to the sources of Belarusian People’s Tribunal representative Igor Makar, Section 7 of KGB Alpha Group was created in 2012 in order to do the "dirty job" including terror and assassination of political opponents. It is known that the campaigns planned and prepared by the Section in 2012 and which were discussed at the recorded meeting were not accomplished, and V. Zaitsev left his post rather promptly.

State Security Committee of the Republic of Belarus (KGB) structure

  • External Intelligence Directorate (at the time of the USSR - 1st Directorate)

  • Main Directorate of Counter-Intelligence Activities (at the time of the USSR - 2nd Directorate)

  • Main Directorate of the Protection of the Constitutional Order and Fight Against Terrorism (at the times of the USSR - 4th Directorate)

  • Main Directorate of Economic Security and Anti-Corruption (at the times of the USSR - 9th Directorate)

  • Office of Military Counterintelligence (at the time of the USSR - "UVKR" - military counter-intelligence directorate)

  • Investigative Committee

  • Main Directorate for Provision of Operational Search Activities (at the times of the USSR - 7th Directorate)

  • Government Communications Department (at the time of the USSR - Section "C")

  • Alpha Group - counter-terrorism unit of the State Security Committee of the Republic of Belarus. It also consists of some sections.

  • State educational institution “The Institute of National Security of the Republic of Belarus"

  • Personnel department

* Each region of Belarus has its own regional offices. They have the similar names of directorates and departments and perform the similar tasks (see above). Informal names, like 2nd, 4th, 9th, are still in use from the times of the USSR but do not mean the current order of directorates and the importance of the campaigns they run.

As per the recording, V. Zaitsev says in the conversation that A. Lukashenko has assigned political assassinations to KGB, and he has already allocated $1.5 million for these purposes. The attendees of the meeting are discussing use of poisons, explosives and car breakdowns as the ways to reach the goals and also name the targets outside Belarus. They are O. Alkaev, V. Borodach and V. Dudkin in Germany and P. Sheremet in Russia. Particularly, an explosion as a way to kill P. Sheremet is being discussed. According to the anonymous source, the recording does not contain some other names of potential targets. For example, political expert Andrei Suzdaltsev, living in Russia, could be also targeted.

Thus, according to the leaked file, KGB were planning and preparing attacks on exiled political opponents outside Belarus in 2012. Such activities can be qualified as an act of aggression against Russia and Germany, and, in fact, as an act of state terrorism and thus a thorough investigation is required. Moreover, P. Sheremet died in 2016 in Kyiv, Ukraine, after his car exploded. Those who ordered the murder have not been established yet.

Igor Makar received this recording in 2012 and anonymously handed it over to the authorities in the western countries. The recording and the collected information, however, have never been published before.

Catalin Grigoras, the expert of the National Center for Media Forensics at the University of Colorado, USA, who examined the recording in 2020 upon the request of EU Observer online newspaper (Belgium), said, that the digital signature which could have identified the source in KGB was deleted, but no obvious traces of audio manipulations were found.

The recording and some case-related information are being now disclosed due to high public significance.

Audio transcript:

Duration: 24:15
Participants:

ZAITSEV: Zaitsev Vadim Yurievich. State Security Committee of the Republic of Belarus (KGB) chairman (2008 - 2012).

“ALMAZ” EMPLOYEE: KGB Alpha Group employee, former employee of the Special Anti-Terrorist Unit "Almaz". Name unknown.

EMPLOYEE "YURI": KGB Alpha Group employee. Name defined as "Yuri" in course of the conversation.



The Taraikovsky case. Report on the results of the preliminary investigation

Introduction

Due to the collapse of the rule of law currently in place in the Republic of Belarus; based on Article 34 part 1 and Article 35 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Belarus; due to explicit inability of Belarusian security and law enforcement systems to effectively protect the country from the internal threat, that has been unequivocally demonstrated by suspending the official investigation into the death of Alexander Valerievich Taraikovsky - the first victim of peaceful protests against electoral fraud and whose death has been officially recognized and confirmed by Belarusian authorities.

In response to the high public and international significance of the given case expressed in the public outcry, the OSCE statement (dated November 19, 2020) and the European Parliament resolution (dated November 26, 2020) demanding a prompt, thorough, impartial and independent investigation.

Within the framework of activities of Belarusian People’s Tribunal (Belarusky Narodny Tribunal) public initiative.

The group of active and former Belarusian law enforcement officers headed by Belarusian People’s Tribunal member Igor Makar and with non-public expert assistance of their colleagues from EU states and Switzerland carried out the preliminary investigation into the death circumstances. The preliminary investigation determined not only the circumstances of events at the crime scene but also the name of the shooter - the employee of the Special Anti-Terrorist Unit "Almaz" of the Ministry of the Internal Affairs of the Republic of Belarus. The preliminary investigation reached the conclusion that the “Almaz” employee committed an unmotivated, cynical and brutal premeditated murder. To date the law enforcement system of Belarus have done nothing to prosecute the shooter.

The preliminary investigation is based on the three video footages taken at the moment of commission of the crime and showing the same events from three different angles. In course of the analysis of the given video footages, non-public assistance of Igor Makar`s colleagues from the EU states and Switzerland was involved. Besides, additional analytical and operational activities were carried out in order to identify the shooter. The details of these activities are impossible to disclose at the moment.

The victim

1) 1.Taraikovsky, Alexander Valerievich, born in 1986. Businessman, owned a small business - car sunshade curtains manufacturing (hober.by). Was married, had a daughter.

The shooters

1) Korovin, Nikita Yurievich, born in 1993. Employee of the Special Anti-Terrorist Unit "Almaz" of the Ministry of the Internal Affairs of the Republic of Belarus.

2) An employee of the Special Anti-Terrorist Unit "Almaz", unidentified at the moment of the publication of the given preliminary investigation results. He was armed with a weapon with laser target designator and also attempted to kill the victim.

What happened that day

On August 10, 2020, Alexander Taraikovsky came back home at 20.00 after a walk with his daughter.

As soon as he had learned about a peaceful protest near Pushkinskaya metro station he decided to take part in it.

At 22.30, Alexander Taraikovsky phoned his partner and told her he was on his way home.

At about 23.00, standing with his hands up in front of the elite special forces formation, Alexander Taraikovsky was shot dead in the heart with a rubber bullet near the metro station entrance. The fatal shot was made from an inadmissibly short distance.

The same evening, the Ministry of Internal Affairs made an official statement about the death of an unidentified man near Pushkinskaya metro station. According to the statement, the man died after the self-made explosive device, which he intended to throw at the special forces employees, detonated in his hands.

The preliminary investigation results allow to claim that the Ministry of Internal Affairs’ official statement is an outright and deliberate lie and serves as an intended attempt to cover up one more crime committed by their employees against the people of Belarus.

The crime

The analysis of the crime was carried out by Belarusian People’s Tribunal member Igor Makar on the basis of several video footages from the crime scene. The preliminary investigation also involved assistance of experts, information provided by anonymous sources and operational activities. The details of these activities are impossible to disclose at the moment.

VIDEO FOOTAGE 1

Alexander Taraikovsky, wearing a a white T-shirt and thus being clearly visible, was going from Pushkinskaya metro station entrance towards the special forces.

Almost immediately he raised his hands up showing he was not dangerous and not aggressive.

With his hands up, he continued going towards the special forces. The first analysed video footage shows the moment when a stun grenade detonates behind his back. The explosion in the background allowed to see that he did not put his hands down and was going towards “Almaz” employees without any explosives in his hands. The second stun grenade explosion behind his back shows him still going with his hands up.

After the second explosion, one of the “Almaz” employees armed with an unidentified weapon with a laser target designator made the first shot at Alexander Taraikovsky. This shot was a miss.

According to the preliminary investigation results, at this moment Nikita Korovin got into position with Saiga-12K shotgun in his hands and started to thoroughly aim at Alexander Taraikovsky.

Alexander Taraikovsky continued going with his hands up. The third stun grenade exploded behind his back.

An explosion of Zarya-2 “M” special means can be seen at this moment in the foreground of the footage. The light effect from this explosion allowed to accurately define the moment of the shot on all the three analysed video footages, as well as the “Almaz” employee who shot at Alexander Taraikovsky a fraction of a second later. Thus, the information provided by anonymous sources was proved. Currently, it is impossible to disclose this information, however, it has helped to identify the employee who made the fatal shot.

Alexander Taraikovsky was shot in the chest, and the shot turned him to the right. He was still standing on his feet. The wound in the heart, however, left no chances. The video footage shows dark thick blood. Apparently, the ventricle with venous blood was hit.

Another “Almaz” employee was tracking the target with laser target designator and getting ready to finish off the victim, if necessary. Nikita Korovin was attentively watching Taraikovsky dying.

VIDEO FOOTAGE 2

The second video footage allowed to determine the circumstances of the crime in detail. Particularly, it proved that Alexander Taraikovsky could hear any order to stop or any warning from “Almaz” employees, but they apparently did not do that. The footage also allowed to exactly determine the “Almaz” employee who made the fatal shot.

VIDEO FOOTAGE 3

The preliminary investigation established the 10.5 meter distance between the “Almaz” employee and Alexander Taraikovsky at the moment when the shot was fired.

VIDEO FOOTAGE 4

The gun that killed Alexander Taraikovsky was Saiga-12K shotgun patterned after the Kalashnikov series of rifles. This model of shotguns is in active use in Special Anti-Terrorist Unit "Almaz" and this fact is proved by other analysed video footages showing the same employee.

VIDEO FOOTAGE 5

The time between the shot and the moment when Alexander Taraikovsky fell to the ground was about 10.45 seconds.

VIDEO FOOTAGE 6

Established facts

The preliminary investigation established the following facts:

1) Alexander Taraikovsky was shot from about 10.5 meter distance.

2) The shot was fired from Saiga-12K shotgun. This shotgun model is manufactured in Russia and patterned after Kalashnikov rifle.

3) Alexander Taraikovsky was standing with his hands up at the moment of the shooting. He was absolutely visible to the “Almaz” employees and was not dangerous for them.

4) The “Almaz” employees had all possibilities to give any verbal order to Alexander Taraikovsky at that moment.

5) The shot made by Nikita Korovin was aimed. Prior to shooting, the “Almaz” employee got into position, targeted Alexander Taraikovsky’s heart and only then fired.

6) According to the information provided in the report on the initial medical examination, Alexander’s death was violent. The bullet hit his heart.

7) Alexander died almost immediately. It is clear from his actions before he collapsed. After been shot, he remained standing for about 10 seconds and then fell to the ground.

8) The preliminary investigation results show that Nikita Korovin and other to date unidentified “Almaz” employees used firearms against peaceful citizens repeatedly and unreasonably.

Conclusion

On August 10, 2020, at about 23.00, close to Pushkinskaya metro entrance at the intersection of Pushkin Avenue and Pritytskogo Street, Special Anti-Terrorist Unit “Almaz” employee Korovin, Nikita Yurievich (b. 1993) with complicity of other unidentified at the moment of the preliminary investigation “Almaz” employees, committed the murder of Taraikovsky, Alexander Valeryevich (b. 1986). p>

The established facts allow to claim that the shooting at Alexander Taraikovsky was deliberately aimed, unreasonably violent and made with cynical awareness of the consequences. As a professional special forces employee, Nikita Korovin was definitely aware of what he was doing. Due to his professional responsibilities, he knew for sure that a shot aimed at the heart and fired from such a short distance would lead to death.

Belarusian People’s Tribunal considers it right to suspend the next phase of the investigation for a short period of time in order to receive any reaction of the legal authorities of the Republic of Belarus and Belarusian people to the results of the preliminary investigation and thus to choose the appropriate course of action regarding the case depending on this reaction.

Igor Makar’s interview to Tatyana Martynova