Taking into account the seriousness of accusation towards Artur Finkevich Human Rights Center Viasna appeals to the international society to begin social and political campaign in Artur's defense and to use all the possible political mechanisms in order to prevent a conviction of a youth activist.
A criminal persecution of A. Lukashenka’s opponents is still taking place in Belarus.
The fate of the latter, youth activist Artur Finkevich, is a matter of especial concern for Human Rights Center Viasna. Mr Finkevich has been kept in the investigative isolator of Minsk since 30 January 2006. He was detained by the police for making political graffiti in Minsk. He is accused of violation of two articles of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Belarus - part 2 of article 339 (malignant hooliganism) and part 3 of article 218 (purposeful destruction or defilement of property). In the case he is found guilty of violation of the latter article, he can be sentenced to 7-12 years of jail. In addition, the article doesn't provide for conditional imprisonment at all. The materials of the criminal case have been already passed to court. The trial will take place within a month's period. We consider that the arrest of Artur Finkevich has obvious political motivation and is connected to his public and political activity.
Taking into account the seriousness of accusation towards Artur Finkevich Human Rights Center Viasna appeals to begin social and political campaign in Artur’s defense and to use all the possible political mechanisms in order to prevent a conviction of a youth activist.
April 19, 2006