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MFA statement on the sentencing of political prisoners in Belarus

 

On 14 December 2021, a court in Belarus delivered verdicts harsh sentence to six political prisoners who were imprisoned last year in connection with the Belarusian presidential elections, not recognized by the EU.

Among those sentenced are former presidential contender Siarhei Tsikhanouski (sentenced to 18 years in prison), former members of his team Artsyom Sakau and Dzmitry Papou (16), bloggers Ihar Losik (15) and Uladzimer Tsyhanovich (15) and former presidential candidate Mikalay Statkevich (14).

The Czech Republic condemns this verdict in the strongest possible terms and expresses its solidarity to the convicted as well as to their families and friends.

Civil society representatives, human rights defenders and independent journalists continue to face repressions in Belarus today. We are witnessing brutal use of force against peaceful protesters, mass arrests, arbitrary detentions and torture in breach of international commitments of Belarus within OSCE and UN. The Czech Republic reiterates its call on Belarus to refrain from such actions, release all political prisoners and to start dialogue with its own citizens.

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