Heads of Czech and Slovak Embassies were refused meeting with Marynich

2005 2005-07-20T10:00:00+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

According to Radio Liberty, the ambassador of Czech Republic to Belarus Uladzimier Ruml and his colleague from Slovakia Iosif Machyshak were refused meeting with the Belarusian political prisoner Mikhail Marynich who has been serving his sentence in a Minsk prison.

The written refusal to the request from Uladzimier Ruml that was received from the Prison Administration of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Belarus was confirmed in Czech Embassy but was not commented, however.

It also became known that the Slovak Ambassador Iosif Machyshak sent a similar request to the MIA of Belarus and received refusal, too. Uladzimier Kouchur, head of the Prison Administration, explained to Radio Liberty why the Czech and the Slovak diplomat was denied meeting with Mikhail Marynich. According to the police official, the main reason was that Mikhail Marynich does not have either nationality of Czech Republic or Slovakia.
Ihar, Mr.Marynich' son, also said that Mikhail Marynich's lawyer has not been allowed to see his client for more than a week, the governor of the prison quotes as the reason the prisoner's failure to file an appropriate request. Meanwhile, Ihar is convinced that the reason is different, the sons are very concerned about the father's health.

The former minister and ambassador of Mikhail Marynich has been behind the bars since April last year. He was sent to prison for 3.5 years for stealing property. Meanwhile, many in Belarus believe this sentence is politically motivated. Before he was arrested, Mr.Marynich openly moved to the opposition camp and declared his intention to run for presidency. Amnesty International declared him a prisoner of conscience.