“Once you’ve killed an innocent person, you cannot set it back”
On 28 November the Minsk office of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee hosted a press-conference on the upcoming verdict in the 11 April 2011 subway bombing trial in the context of the death penalty.
The press-conference was attended by Mrs. Liubou Kavaliova, the mother of Uladzislau Kavaliou, one of the two defendants in the trial. “I believe that my son is innocent. So do victims of the attack and many international human rights organizations. Please help save my son from the death penalty”, said she addressing President Aliaksandr Lukashenka.
“The victims of the attack have a number of questions regarding the impartiality and transparency of the trial and access to the case materials. Aliaksandr Kruty, a representative of one of the injured from the April attack Inesa Krutaya, made a motion to abolish the death penalty and asked the court to defer consideration of the case. A few days later - on September 20 - he was arrested and sent to a mental hospital allegedly for hooliganism. None of their motions was considered by the court. The defendants claimed that they were exposed to torture during the investigation to extract confessions. During the trial, independent journalists were banned from communicating with victims. The official media already refer to Kavaliou and Kanavalau as terrorists without awaiting the decision of the court. With this petition, I am turning to you asking one single thing: I am asking you not to kill my son Uladzislau Kavaliou and Dzmitry Kanavalau, but instead to find those who are actually responsible for these terrorist crimes,” says Mrs. Kavaliova in her appeal to the President.