The Committee for State Security (KGB) appears to have extended the detention of young photographer Anton Surapin, who was not released from the KGB jail in Minsk on Monday.
Mr. Surapin, a 20-year-old student at Belarusian State University's Journalism Institute, was detained on July 13 for 72 hours over pictures of “pro-free speech” teddy bears that were allegedly dropped from a plane piloted by representatives of Swedish public relations firm Studio Total on Belarus on July 4.
"Surapin's mother has received a phone call from a state lawyer and the parents plan to meet with him tomorrow to clear up the situation," Zhanna Litvina, head of the Belarusian Association of Journalists, told BelaPAN on Monday.
On July 16, Mr. Surapin's mother formally asked the KGB to tell her in connection with what article of the Criminal Code her son had been arrested and whether he had already been charged.
Mr. Surapin may spend up to 10 days in custody before he may be charged.
Ms. Litvina stressed that the young man could not have been involved in any "provocative actions."
The news site Belarusian News Photos, founded by Mr. Surapin, ran the photos of the teddy bears with miniature placards lying on the grass hours after the alleged drop. In his comments, Mr. Surapin said that he had received them from an anonymous author living outside Minsk
On Friday morning, Mr. Surapin sent his associates a text message that KGB officers had come to him to conduct a search. He was arrested shortly afterward. //BelaPAN