The EU has reiterated its demands for the immediate and unconditional release of all political prisoners in Belarus (now numbering more than 650), including Marya Kaliesnikava and Maksim Znak, who were yesterday sentenced to 11 and 10 years in prison respectively.
According to the statement, issued by the European Union External Action Service (EEAS), the EU deplores the continuous blatant disrespect by the Minsk regime of the human rights and fundamental freedoms of the people of Belarus.
In August 2020, Marya Kaliesnikava, together with Svetlana Tsikhanouskaya and Veronika Tsepkalo, became a symbol of the movement for democratic Belarus. “In a trial behind closed doors, together with a prominent lawyer, Mr Znak, she was tried on unfounded charges of ‘conspiring to seize state power in an unconstitutional way’, ‘calling for actions aimed at damaging the national security of Belarus through the use of media and the Internet’ and ‘establishing and leading and an extremist group’,” the statement says.
The EU Delegation to Belarus has also launched a campaign on Facebook to support those who are now unjustly jailed and persecuted for exercising their rights. Among them are students, journalists, civil servants, and others.
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