Aliaksandar Zdzvizhkou appealed against verdict
Former deputy chief editor of Zhoda newspaper Aliaksandar Zdzvizhkou appealed against the sentence to 3 years of imprisonment for publishing Mohammed cartoons.
Journalist’s lawyer Maya Aliaksandrava says they have appealed against the verdict. “We do not agree with the verdict and ask to cancel it. I cannot give you more details, because the trial was closed for public”, -- the lawyer told RFE/RL. According to Aliaksandrava, the Supreme Court will consider the appeal in late February.
Let us remind the readers, on January 18th, Minsk city court sentenced former deputy chief editor of Zhoda newspaper Aliaksandar Zdzvizhkou to 3 years of imprisonment. Zdzvizhkou was punished for publishing prophet Mohammed cartoons, which he downloaded from the Internet, in February 2006. The court decided the journalist stirred up religious hatred through abusing his position.
The lawyer told RFE/RL, recently her client has been transferred from KGB isolator to Valadarka pre-trial center. She explained the reasons of the transfer: “Because they investigated the case there. Now the verdict was already announced, although Zdzvizhkou is not considered a convict yet”.
The lawyer said Aliaksandar had not complained about the conditions although he said his eyesight was getting worse. She thinks Zdzvizhkou is getting all the necessary medical care.
Do Zdzvizhkou relatives visit him? Do they send parcels to him?
Aliaksandar’s mother, Hanna, does not speak to journalists. Aliaksei Karol, chief editor of the shut down newspaper Zhoda, says friends and colleagues sent food parcels to Zdzvizhkou.
“We sent cigarettes, coffee, tea for him. That was before trial. We learned through the lawyer that he had received our parcels.” The former colleagues of Zdzvizhkou plan to send him a food parcel to Valadarka jail. Aliaksei Karol said Zdzvizhkou had asked an Orthodox priest to visit him in the cell. “As far as I know, such a meeting was permitted and will take place soon”, -- Aliaksei Karol says.