Political prisoner Mikhail Zhamchuzhny beaten in prison, his life still at risk
Political prisoner Mikhail Zhamchuzhny, currently held in penal colony No. 9 in Horki, has been reportedly beaten by his cellmate. This news raises serious concerns and fears for the prisoner’s life.
Earlier, Zhamchuzhny repeatedly wrote in his letters that his life was at risk.
On 24 January, political prisoner was left unescorted in the infirmary hallway, where he was attacked by another prisoner wearing sunglasses, black gloves and a knitted cap. Mikhail Zhamchuzhny received several blows to the head.
Following the incident, the political prisoner filed a complaint to the Prosecutor's Office of the Mahilioŭ region.
The Human Rights Center “Viasna” also learned that during Zhamchuzhny’s stay in so-called ‘cell-type premises’, where he recently spent one month for ‘failing to obey the legitimate orders of the prison administration’, the prisoner was subjected to yet another penalty, three days in a punishment cell. The political prisoner was punished for allegedly failing to dust the table in his cell. It is the 18th penalty imposed on the political prisoner since his transfer to the Horki colony in July 2017.
In July 2015, Mikhail Zhamchuzhny, founder of the Platform Innovation human rights NGO, was sentenced by the Viciebsk Regional Court to 6 years in a penal colony. On October 23, the Supreme Court's judicial board for criminal cases examined the activist’s appeal and ordered a more severe punishment, six and a half years in prison.
He was found guilty of committing crimes under Art. 376 (Parts 1 and 2), Art. 16 (Part 5), Art. 375 (Part 1) and Art. 431 (Parts 1 and 2) of the Criminal Code: inciting deliberate disclosure of information constituting a service secret; illegally purchasing and selling special technical means for secretly obtaining information, including repeatedly; bribery and repeated bribery.
Belarusian human rights activists declared Mikhail Zhamchuzhny a political prisoner.