13 December 2019, Friday, 9:03
The Wait Is Nearly Over

Zmitser Bekaliuk: "Lead Watch" Is Example Of Brest Citizens' Self-Organization

Zmitser Bekaliuk: "Lead Watch" Is Example Of Brest Citizens' Self-Organization

Who and how is on watch 24 hours a day near the battery plant.

Since May 3, a constant surveillance with photo and video recording was organized near the enterprise, which has been operating for several months in the pre-commissioning mode, b-g.by reports.

"Lead Watch is an example of the self-organization of Brest citizens and residents of the district. I am proud to live in a city where there are so many reasonable and determined people. No one was in charge - people saw the danger at the plant and decided to record everything," – one of the leaders of the protest movement, Zmitser Bekaliuk, said.

At first these were occasional visits to the plant, which started the commissioning process. But very quickly concerned people realized that they had to keep an eye on it all the time and organized a round-the-clock watch. At first, 10-12 people took part in it shifting. When it became clear that there were not enough people, other people were called to help.

Now "Lead Watch" includes 60 people who, according to a pre-determined schedule, go on 2-hour duty and record everything that happens at the plant: who came to its territory, who left, what and when turned on and off, whether the lights are on at the plant at night, etc. All the information is transferred to a special group for analysis.

In order to provide information to the Ministry of Natural Resources, Prosecutor's Office and other state bodies in a timely manner, activists began to use e-mail. Thanks to this, the government agencies are now aware of what happened at the plant and what the activists are worried about during the day. A huge plus of e-mails is the possibility to attach video files, activists say.

The shift, which comes on watch, gets a bag with two gas masks and a flashlight. Now the set even includes a phonendoscope - it allows one to hear the movement of water in the rainstorm.

Activists say: sometimes those who are not scheduled to be on watch come for duty, because they are simply free to help. Sometimes "strangers" come and film those who are on watch. However, people are not afraid of it. Now the most terrible thing for them is the plant, which already pollutes the environment. This fact has already been recognized by the authorities.