Czech reporter beaten up at opposition demonstration in Minsk

Minsk/Prague, March 20 (CTK) - Jan Rybar, reporter of the Czech daily Mlada fronta Dnes, was attacked and beaten up at the opposition demonstration in Minsk, held in protest against what is widely viewed as rigged presidential election in Belarus on Sunday, he told CTK today.

"They kicked me in my head and took my computer away from me," Rybar said.

He said in his opinion he had been beaten up by agents of the Belarussian secret police KGB, but has no direct piece of evidence to prove it.

"They shouted asking where I had my documents. Surprisingly, they were not interested in money," Rybar said.

He said he had probably attracted the assailants? attention by writing an article on a notebook amid the demonstration and sending it home via a satellite phone.

After the meeting in downtown Minsk was over, he joined people?s march through the city,

"For a moment I dropped to a dark corner, and there it happened," he said, adding that two men barred his way.

"It cannot be ruled out that they were ordinary thieves. It is strange, nevertheless, that they showed interest in my documents rather than money," he said.

After the attack, an ambulance had to take him away.

Rybar left Minsk with the assistance of Czech diplomats earlier today. On arrival in Prague, he underwent a check-up in hospital.

"Fortunately, I escaped with bruises only," he said.