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18 November 2021, 19:16

Belarusian forensic experts busy identifying chemicals used by Poland against refugees

MINSK, 18 November (BelTA) – The State Forensic Examination Committee continues forensic tests ordered by Belarus' Investigative Committee as part of an investigation in line with Article 128 of the Criminal Code of Belarus, BelTA learned from Sergei Titovets, Head of the Mass Media Relations Department of the State Forensic Examination Committee of Belarus.

On 16 November various objects and samples were collected at the site of the incident: a section of the Belarusian-Polish border near the border checkpoint Bruzgi in Belarus' territory. After examining the samples Belarusian forensic experts identified an extract of capsicum alkaloids.

According to Sergei Titovets, this substance is used in special ammunition employed by army and police units, namely in gas grenades, rounds for gas weapons, all kinds of aerosol devices, including water cannons.

Situation at Belarusian-Polish border somewhat stabilizedSituation at Belarusian-Polish border somewhat stabilized
Despite the certain stabilization of the border situation Polish law enforcement personnel periodically use water cannons against refugees at the border checkpoint and the nearby area. The refugees are trying to distance themselves, cover kids, and dry their clothes.

When the substance gets in touch with human skin, mucous membranes, and respiratory tracts, it causes pain, spasms of eye muscles, and tears as well as coughing. Large concentrations can cause burns of mucous membranes, eyes, and skin.

Belarusian forensic experts also found layers of deltametrin, which is an insecticide and a toxic substance.

Fragments of stun grenades were also collected at the site of the incident and submitted for forensic tests.

Chemicals used by Polish police against refugees analyzed by Belarusian scientistsChemicals used by Polish police against refugees analyzed by Belarusian scientists
In his words, the scientists also found capsaicin in the samples that had been provided. “It is an extract of red pepper with a bitter burning quality. The samples also contained its isomer – dihydrocapsaicin. And camphor is the third in this group of irritants,” the official noted.

The State Forensic Examination Committee of Belarus has already carried out over 30 forensic studies with regard to individuals, including four women and one child born in 2007, who had requested medical aid due to the bodily injuries they sustained at the Belarusian-Polish border on 16 November. All of them complained about pain in eyes, irritation in the throat, and pain in the throat. Some people had skin damage.

Forensic studies have determined that the people had sustained bodily injuries due to exposure to chemicals with irritant qualities, Sergei Titovets said.

More objects collected at the site of the incident are being sent to the State Forensic Examination Committee for the sake of various forensic studies ordered by the Investigative Committee of Belarus. The forensic experts are also busy carrying out medicolegal examinations of the people complaining about poor health due to exposure to irritant chemicals.

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