Tuesday. 29.11.2022
HUMAN RIGHTS

Belarus opposition leader's husband sentenced to 18 years in prison

Five other men were also handed long prison sentences
FILED - 11 June 2021, Berlin: Belarusian opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya arrives for a meeting with German Federal Government Commissioner for Culture and the Media Monika Gruetters at the Berlinale festival grounds on Museum Island. In view of the upcoming verdict against her imprisoned husband Sergei Tikhanovsky, Tikhanovskaya has announced that she will persevere. Photo: Christoph Soeder/dpa Pool/dpa.
Before the verdict against her imprisoned husband Sergei Tikhanovsky, Tikhanovskaya said that she will persevere. Photo: Christoph Soeder/dpa.

The husband of Belarusian opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, Sergei Tikhanovsky, has been sentenced to 18 years in prison in his home country.

The 43-year-old blogger will be sent to a penal camp under particularly harsh prison conditions for "preparing and organizing mass uprisings," Belarusian state news agency Belta reported on Tuesday, citing the court in the city of Gomel.

Five other men were also handed long prison sentences. Prominent opposition politician Nikolay Statkevich, for example, is to spend 14 years in a prison camp.

Earlier on Tuesday, Tikhanovskaya said on Telegram that the verdict would be "unlawful" and "nothing to put up with."

Belarusian courts have been criticized for repeatedly issuing politically motivated sentences.

Tikhanovsky originally wanted to run against Belarusian ruler Alexander Lukashenko in last year's presidential election, but was then arrested. His wife Svetlana ran in his place.

Lukashenko not recognized

Lukashenko had himself declared the winner again, but the West does not recognize this after widespread reports of massive fraud.

Despite international protests, several prominent opposition figures have already been sentenced in Belarus in recent months.

For example, Maria Kolesnikova, who worked as a cultural manager in Stuttgart for many years, was sentenced to 11 years in prison. The opposition politician Viktor Babariko was sentenced to 14 years.

Belarus opposition leader's husband sentenced to 18 years in prison
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