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Ukrainian author seized in Belarus, ordered to leave

Associated Press logo Associated Press 2/11/2017

MINSK, Belarus (AP) — A noted Ukrainian poet and novelist says he was seized by security agents in the middle of the night while visiting the capital of Belarus and ordered to leave the country.

In a posting on a social media website, Serhiy Zhadan said Saturday that police confronted him in his hotel room in Minsk about 2 a.m.

"Nothing was explained ... I had to spend the night in a cell," he wrote. He said he was later informed by the country's security agency, the KGB, that he was not allowed to be in Belarus because Russia in 2015 banned him for alleged participation in terrorist activities.

Belarus and Russia share a visa regime.

Zhadan's work, which critics have compared to that of William Burroughs and Beat writers, criticizes post-Soviet society.

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