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Human rights activist Nasta Loika sentenced to 7 years in prison

2023 2023-06-20T12:26:25+0300 2023-06-20T12:26:25+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

On June 20, the Minsk City Court passed a verdict in the case of human rights activist Nasta Loika. The political prisoner was sentenced to seven years of imprisonment under Part 3 of Article 130 of the Criminal Code (inciting social hatred) for preparing the analytical report “Persecution of anarchists, anti-fascists, leftists and social activists in Belarus” (2017-August 2018)”. It allegedly contained a critical assessment of the activities of police officers. The trial was held behind closed doors, so the details and Nasta’s position are unknown. The verdict was pronounced by Alena Shylko, and the prosecution was represented by Volha Dzindzelevich. Nasta said she would appeal the verdict.

Наста Лойко. Фото из архива подруги Насты
Nasta Loika. Nasta’s friend courtesy

According to the prosecutor’s office, one of the human rights reports on the persecution of the anarchist community in Belarus in 2018 contained a negative assessment of the illegal actions of police officers, which caused the initiation of a criminal case against her. The hatred was allegedly incited against a “professional social group of law enforcement officers.” Human rights activists say that this interpretation of the article does not comply with international human rights standards, as evidenced by the practice of international judicial bodies.

Almost at the beginning of the trial, the hearing was closed to the public. This decision was made by the court at the request of prosecutor Dzindzelevich. It was motivated by the need “to exclude the dissemination of information products calling for extremist activities.” Nasta and her lawyer objected to that decision, but the judge granted the prosecutor’s request.

There were a total of three court sessions on the case, and the verdict was announced at the last one today.

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