Letters from Lukashenka’s Prisoners: Pavel Seviarynets
Pavel Seviarynets is a writer, an opposition politician, co-founder of the Belarusian Christian Democracy party. He was detained on 7 June 2020 and held in pre-trial detention for several months before being charged with organising mass riots. In May 2021, he was sentenced to seven years in a penal colony. He is serving his sentence in Shklov in eastern Belarus.
Letters from Lukashenka’s Prisoners: Pavel Mazko
Pavel Mazko is a 19-year-old from Brest in south-western Belarus. He has been in pre-trial detention since 23 March 2021, charged in connection to his participation in the post-election protests in August 2020.
Joint statement on the attempts by the Russian authorities to dismantle the country’s two oldest organisations
It became known on November 11, 2021, that the Prosecutor General’s Office of the Russian Federation filed a lawsuit to wind up Memorial International for allegedly systematic violations of the law on “foreign agents”. The organization is accused of not labelling its materials with a reference to its “foreign agent” status.
Letters from Lukashenka’s Prisoners: Andrei Aliaksandrau
Andrei Aliaksandrau is a journalist and human rights defender. He had been a media manager and deputy director of the Belarusian Private News Agency (BelaPAN) prior to his detention. In the 2010s, he lived and worked in the UK where he studied media management at the University of Westminster, before taking on roles at Index on Censorship and Article 19. Andrei was detained on 12 January 2021 alongside his partner, Irina Zlobina. He is being accused of financing the protests in Minsk by paying fines and reimbursing the costs for detention in temporary detention facilities for those detained during protests in Minsk. He has since been charged with high treason and, if convicted, could face up to 15 years in prison. He remains in pre-trial detention.
Georgian authorities must protect and promote the Freedoms of Expression and Assembly
Human Rights House Foundation (HRHF) and Human Rights House Tbilisi (HRHT) call on the Georgian authorities to act to protect and promote the Freedoms of Expression and Assembly in Georgia and engage substantively with human rights defenders, including Elene Khoshtaria, exercising these rights.
Civil society participation at the UN Human Rights Council cannot be an afterthought
HRHF joins dozens of organisations in a joint letter addressed to the President of the UN Human Rights Council, Ambassador of Austria to the UN in Geneva, Director-General of the United Nations at Geneva, and all Members and Observers of the UN Human Rights Council.
Letters from Lukashenka’s Prisoners: Hanna Vishniak
Hanna Vishniak is a volunteer with Telegram channel “Drivers-97”. The channel, which has 5,000 subscribers, was initially set up to facilitate communication that would help bring people and resources where they were needed. Hanna was detained on 28 October 2020 and held in pre-trial detention in Minsk. On 4 June 2021, she was convicted of “organising and preparing activities that grossly violate public order” and sentenced to 2.5 years in prison. She was then taken to a “correctional colony” in Gomel in south-eastern Belarus.
Letters from Lukashenka’s Prisoners: Ihnat Sidorchyk
Ihnat Sidorchyk is a film director, actor and poet. He was detained on 10 August 2020 and initially charged with “organisation of mass riots” for having called on friends to meet in central Minsk on 9 August (the day of the presidential election) via a Telegram chat. In February 2021, Ihnat was sentenced to three years of restricted freedom in an open penitentiary (so-called “khimiya”), finding him guilty of “group actions that grossly violate public order”. Ihnat was released to await an appeal hearing, but he was re-arrested in June 2021 to begin serving his sentence.
Belarus: Human rights organisations call on Belarusian authorities to end politically motivated prosecutions
Human Rights House Foundation and 17 other international and Belarusian organizations call on Belarusian authorities to immediately annul the outrageous verdict and drop all charges against Leanid Sudalenka and Tatsiana Lasitsa, sentenced today to 3 and 2.5 years in prison, as well as five other members of Viasna who are currently in jail on politically motivated charges.