Head of Strike Committee Gets 15-Days’ Arrest
On October 23 the judge of Horadnia Lieninski borough court Natallia Koziel sentenced the Head of the Strike Committee of the Republic of Belarus Valiery Levanieuski to 15 days of imprisonment.
He has kept a hunger strike since the fist day of imprisonment. It is his third hunger strike in prison. The first time was three years ago when he was arrested for the alleged meeting of businessmen at the entrance of the city executive committee and sentenced to 13 days of arrest. He had been judged by Valiery Iarashevich, who then joined the advocatory board and defended Lievanieuski on October 23. The second time was in June 2002 when he was sentenced to 15 days of imprisonment for “disregard to the court”.
This time had much in common with the first one. Though the advocate managed to prove that there wasn’t any meeting at the entrance of the executive committee on October 11 as people neither held any flags posers nor shouted any slogans, the judge said that Lievanieuski had submitted an application to the city authorities to allow the meeting at that place in this time and found it enough to find the accused guilty of organization of an unauthorized action.
Lievanieuski says that he knew the result of the trial before its beginning because of its purely political nature. That’s why he decided to start a hunger strike of protest against the present legislation and self-will in courts.
It’s worth mentioning that the judge accused of participation in the meeting even the Head of Horadnia regional branch of Helsinki Committee Aliaxandr Antaniuk who attended the trial as a witness. Antaniuk said that he didn’t notice any signs of meeting as people were simply standing and speaking, Lievanieuski didn’t make anything either.
Siarhiei Astrautsou, Horadnia