Leaders of the EU Member States: Call to release and rehabilitation of Statkevich and Dashkevich

2012 2012-10-29T11:46:00+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en http://spring96.org/files/images/sources/migalskimarek.jpg The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
Member of EU Parliament Marek Migalski

Member of EU Parliament Marek Migalski

The situation with democracy and human rights is going worse in Belarus. Mass media and human rights defenders continually inform about repressions, which are used by the regime against civic activists, representatives of the opposition and independent journalists. The situation with political prisoners, who are still in prison and other institutions of confinement, is deteriorating as well. 
Two prisoners of conscience, 2010 presidential candidate Mikola Statkevich and the leader of “Young Front” Zmitser Dashkevich, are in an especially dramatic situation.

Mikola Statkevich was imprisoned for 6 years for participation in a demonstration on 19 December 2010. He is a subject of repressions in prison. He was sent to a punishment cell several times. They tried to break his spirit by limiting contacts with his lawyer, relatives, as well as his correspondence. He was accused of „inability of resocialization in a prison” and was additionally convicted to three years of a stricter colony regime.

Zmitser Dashkevich was imprisoned for two years in a colony for allegedly beating two men he accidentally met two days before the presidential election. The authorities put unprecedented pressure on him; he was tortured and humiliated, underwent several transfers under guard. Almost the whole time of imprisonment he spent in a punishment cell or indoors. At the end of August he was blamed for persistent noncompliance with orders and was sentenced to an additional year of imprisonment. He is discriminated on the grounds of religion, is humiliated in the colony, threatened with use of physical force, including sexual assault and murder, his right for meetings with family is limited without justification. 

The actions of the colony authorities show that Lukashenko seeks to annihilate his political rivals. We can’t allow it! 

Therefore we call upon the leaders of the EU member states to take permanent actions in order to achieve the release and rehabilitation of Mikola Statkevich and Zmitser Dashkevich, as well as other Belarusian political prisoners and immediately appeal to Belarus’ government demanding to stop tortures and other forms of inhuman treatment of political prisoners and stop the prosecution of Mikola Statkevich and Zmitser Dashkevich.

We deeply believe that only consistent action and a common position of the EU member states can lead to the release of Belarusian political prisoners.

Source: http://www.change.org/petitions/leaders-of-the-eu-member-states-call-to-release-and-rehabilitation-of-statkevich-and-dashkevich