The building of Belarusian State Security Agency (KGB) headquarters (17 Niezaliežnasci Ave) is the first building of Stalin’s Empire style in Minsk (its construction began in 1945) and one of the most chic buildings on the main thoroughfare. The legend maintains that the small tower on the right side was mounted so that the notorious chief of Belarusian Soviet Socialist Republic’s KGB, Lavrenti F. Tsanava, could watch football games from his office window at Dinamo Stadium across the building.
Nowadays, many people are afraid of KGB just like in the Soviet times. However, in 2004, when protesters against the falsification of referendum results came to the building, the then KGB chief Leanid Yeryn walked out and invited opposition leader Pavel Seviarynets to his office where they peacefully had a cup of tea. In 2011, KGB got in spotlight when activists from the Ukrainian topless women’s pressure group FEMEN staged a daring protest in front of the building.
Taking photos of the KGB building (as well as some other official buildings in Minsk) is forbidden.
Photo: Siarhei Hudzilin
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