Man with Parkinson’s and brain pacemaker beaten and imprisoned in Babrujsk Updated

2021 2021-11-22T13:25:13+0300 2021-11-23T13:59:26+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
Siarhei Bialiyaeu. Credit:

Siarhei Bialiyaeu. Credit:

On the morning of November 10, officers of GUBAZIK, Interior Ministry’s Main Directorate for Combating Organized Crime and Corruption, raided the apartment of Siarhei Bialiyaeu in Babrujsk. According to Siarhei’s family, they were looking for evidence to support charges of “insulting a police officer”.

However, after being brought to a police department, Bialiyaeu faced charges for reposting a message from a Telegram channel labelled as “extremist” by the Belarusian authorities. During his stay at the police station, one of the officers punched the man on the head for no reason. Siarhei’s relatives stress that he not only cannot be beaten but should avoid any abrupt movements, since he has a Parkinson’s disease and wears a neurostimulator.

Last winter, Bialiyaeu was arrested on protesting charges and police officers used a metal detector to search the man. This interfered with the neurostimulator’s rhythm. A few months ago, Siarhei underwent a brain surgery in Minsk and a new pacemaker was implanted to replace the damaged device.

Bialiyaeu’s relatives say that after his latest arrest he has been finding it extremely difficult to move, which perhaps means that the neurostimulator was affected again.

On November 16, Siarhei Bialiyaeu was sentenced to 10 days in prison. He is expected to be released on November 26.

“There’s a high risk that if the neurostimulator in his head stops working, he might just die. Plus, he was beaten in the police department and for some time he couldn’t recognize his family members,” the human rights activists learned from his relatives.

Bialiyaeu was sure that he would not be imprisoned, but awarded a fine, instead, so he was not ready for prison. The battery can only work for a few more days, and if it is not recharged, it can endanger Siarhei’s health and life, his family members stress.

UPD. On November 22, Siarhei Bialiyaeu was brought home to take a charger for his brain pacemaker. After that, the man was returned to prison.