News on the topic: penitentiary system

“He tore my clothes, beat and insulted me.” Survivor stories

21.10.2021 “He tore my clothes, beat and insulted me.” Survivor stories

Nearly one year ago, on October 25, Aliaksandra (not her real name) was arrested while she was hiding with her friends in the entrance hall of an apartment building after the dispersal of a peaceful protest in Minsk. She was half strangled with her own scarf and her shoulder was injured. The girl told her story to Viasna.

Prison conditions for people arrested for commenting on killed KGB officer amount to torture

19.10.2021 Prison conditions for people arrested for commenting on killed KGB officer amount to torture

Most people detained last month for commenting on the Zeltser case are being held in inhumane conditions, according to their families.

Nearly 100 days in prison: Husband and wife convicted for seventh time over “extremist content” in private messages

12.10.2021 Nearly 100 days in prison: Husband and wife convicted for seventh time over “extremist content” in private messages

On October 11, Siarhei Krupenich and Anastasiya Krupenich-Kandratsiyeva, a young couple in Minsk, were sentenced to 15 and 14 days of “administrative imprisonment” for exchanging “extremist content” in a private conversation on the Telegram messaging app.

Political prisoners punished by solitary confinement for answering letters of solidarity

06.10.2021 Political prisoners punished by solitary confinement for answering letters of solidarity

Political prisoners serving their sentences at penal colony No. 17 in Škloŭ are sent to solitary confinement or punishment cells if they reply to letters of support they receive from people they don’t know.

Imprisoned punk rocker Ihar Bantsar to spend remainder of term in penal colony

30.09.2021 Imprisoned punk rocker Ihar Bantsar to spend remainder of term in penal colony

The decision was taken in response to a request by the administration of correctional facility No. 9 in Viciebsk, where the man had already served three and a half months.

Political prisoner Natallia Hersche to be sent to maximum-security mail prison

29.09.2021 Political prisoner Natallia Hersche to be sent to maximum-security mail prison

Political prisoner Natallia Hersche will serve the remainder of her 2 ½-year sentence in a maximum-security prison, after spending nearly 12 months in a general-security penal colony, RFE/RL’s Belarus service learned from Natallia’s brother Henadz Kasiyan.

Stop torture and criminal prosecution of prisoner Artsiom Anishchuk!

16.06.2021 Stop torture and criminal prosecution of prisoner Artsiom Anishchuk!

Statement by the Board of the Human Rights Center "Viasna"

Prisoner swallows “metallic objects” to protest torture

09.06.2021 Prisoner swallows “metallic objects” to protest torture

Artsiom Anishchuk swallowed several metallic objects to avoid “physical and psychological violence” he has been subjected to during his stay at penal colony No. 15 in Mahilioŭ, novychas.by said quoting the inmate’s lawyer, who managed to see his client for the first time since May 13.

Ales Bialiatski on the death of political prisoner Vitold Ashurak

26.05.2021 Ales Bialiatski on the death of political prisoner Vitold Ashurak

Can we hope that the Investigative Committee will conduct an objective investigation and find out the truth?

Support has no boundaries: how to write letters to political prisoners if you are outside of Belarus

16.01.2021 Support has no boundaries: how to write letters to political prisoners if you are outside of Belarus

Viasna has prepared the answers to the most frequent questions foreigners ask when writing letters to political prisoners.

Overcrowded and violent: what awaits Belarusian protesters in prison

20.11.2020 Overcrowded and violent: what awaits Belarusian protesters in prison

Thousands of people have been detained in Belarus' pro-democracy protesters - and hundreds are facing charges. The prison system that will take them is largely unreformed and has its roots in the Soviet system.

UN experts urge Belarus to release children and young people jailed for drug offences amid COVID-19 crisis

08.05.2020 UN experts urge Belarus to release children and young people jailed for drug offences amid COVID-19 crisis

The soaring number of COVID-19 cases in Belarus should compel the Government to immediately release children and young people imprisoned for drug-related offences, UN human rights experts said on May 7.

Authorities block access to political prisoners

14.03.2018 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.

Bialiatski calls for respect for fundamental rights and freedoms of political prisoner Zhamchuzhny

25.09.2017 Bialiatski calls for respect for fundamental rights and freedoms of political prisoner Zhamchuzhny

Ales Bialiatski, head of the Human Rights Center "Viasna", has written to the Interior Ministry’s Department of Corrections urging to take immediate measures to ensure that political prisoner Mikhail Zhamchuzhny is held in conditions, which would guarantee his personal security and respect for fundamental rights and freedoms.

Analytical review of detention conditions and treatement of persons convicted of involvement in peaceful protests in March 2017

31.05.2017 Analytical review of detention conditions and treatement of persons convicted of involvement in peaceful protests in March 2017

The peaceful demonstrators sentenced to administrative detention in Minsk were held in conditions that are contrary to the state’s obligations enshrined in the Constitution and international treaties. Such conditions of detention are a form of cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment prohibited by the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.

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