Authorities block access to political prisoners
The administration of penal colony No. 9 in Horki, Mahilioŭ region, has not allowed representatives of the regional Public Monitoring Commission to meet with political prisoner Mikhail Zhamchuzhny, who is currently held in the facility, mspring.online said.
Earlier, Tatsiana Reviaka, director of the Barys Zvozskau Belarusian Human Rights House, wrote to the regional and national PMCs asking them to visit the colony, after Zhamchuzhny was reportedly beaten by another prisoner.
On March 13, the two commissions visited the prison. However, they were not allowed to meet with the political prisoner, according to human rights defender Barys Bukhel, who has been recently elected commission member.
“We were not welcome. Our main goal was to meet with political prisoner Mikhail Zhamchuzhny, but the prison authorities made sure it would never happen. He is currently in a punishment cell. And we were not allowed to see these cells,” the human rights activist said.
In late February, monitors were prevented from visiting another political prisoner, Dzmitry Paliyenka, who is serving his sentence in penal colony No. 2 in Babrujsk.