More activists imprisoned and fined ahead of new protests

2017 2017-03-14T16:58:34+0300 2017-03-14T17:01:25+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
Anti-parasite tax protest in Hrodna. 19 February 2017. Photo:

Anti-parasite tax protest in Hrodna. 19 February 2017. Photo:

The courts in Brest and Hrodna have sentenced several activists to jail terms of up to 15 days on charges of involvement in protests held on February 19. Others were fined for the same offenses.

In particular, fines were imposed on Vital Huliak, Iryna Davidovich, Halina Lamashevich, Mikalai Salianik, Volha Verameyenka, Yauhen Braun, Anatol Myshkevich, Anton Vaitsekhau and Aliaksandr Abukhovich.

Vadzim Saranchukou and Ezhy Hryhencha were sentenced to 13 days in jail in Hrodna, while Siarhei Verameyenka was imprisoned for 15 days.

Siarhei Piatrukhin and Dzmitry Harbunou, both bloggers in Brest, were arrested for 15 and 7 days, respectively.

Aleh Aksionau was sentenced to 15 days in jail.

More protesters are expected to stand trials in Baranavičy and Babrujsk.

Earlier today, police officers in Minsk detained two members of the BPF youth branch, Mikita Krasnakutski and Mikalai Lohvinau. They were taken to the police department.

Meanwhile, human rights defenders say that a total of over 100 persons have been detained since March 3, when first protests against the controversial Decree No. 3 were held across Belarus. At least 34 persons have been sentenced to short jail terms.

Experts fear that the escalation of repression against the country’s political opposition and journalists will be followed by an even more severe crackdown on peaceful demonstrators, as more protests are expected to be held across Belarus in the coming days, including a major one in Minsk scheduled on Wednesday and a Freedom Day celebration on March 25.