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Belarusian journalist and girlfriend in jail moved to house arrest

Kiev – An opposition Belarusian journalist and his Russian girlfriend arrested after being separated from a plane destined for Minsk were transferred from prison to house arrest. .. “

Raman Plata Sevic and his Russian girlfriend Sophia Sapega, who ran a messaging app channel widely used in last year’s massive protest against authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko, flew from Greece to Lithuania. Was confiscated on May 23, when he was forced to land in Minsk because of suspected threat of a bomb.

Some world leaders accused dramatic Gambit of hijacking, which prompted another round of western sanctions against Belarus, where Lukashenko faced months of massive protests against his rule. However, he criticized him for his brutal crackdown.

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Faced with 15 years of potential in prison since his arrest, Platasevic was seen expressing regret for his work on state television and government press conferences. Opposition said he was compelled to speak.

Opposition leader Sviatlana Tsukhanouskaya called the couple’s move to house arrest “good news,” but emphasized that their situation remained volatile. “Home arrest is not free, they are still facing prosecution, all their steps are still being monitored, which means they are still hostages,” under pressure from the authorities. Said Tsukhanouskaya, who left Belarus for Lithuania last year.

She added that her team is in contact with Platasevic’s parents. They “have not been given information about their son and are not allowed to talk to him,” and “I am confident that the administration is playing games using the lives of Raman and Sophia.”

An adviser who spoke with his parents added that they believed the authorities had no plans to release their son. Instead, Francak Viacorka said the move could be aimed at stopping further penalties.

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“We encourage the European and global communities not to give in — everyone must be free and not under house arrest,” he said. another. ”

Via Korka said Platasevic’s sister was able to give him some belongings and talk to him. “Home arrest is not free. He lives with a KGB (security service) operative, an agent who monitors him 24 hours a day,” he said.

Sapega’s lawyer, Anton Gasinsky, also confirmed that his client had recently been transferred to house arrest without specifying one day. She is currently staying in an apartment in Minsk and her parents met her at a restaurant on Thursday.

Gasinsky didn’t say if Platasevic was there either, but Sapega said he didn’t go alone.

Platasevic’s lawyer, Inessa Orenskaya, refused to comment on the client’s whereabouts and circumstances because of a nondisclosure agreement.

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Belarus was upset by months of massive protests after Lukashenko was re-elected in the sixth quarter of the vote in August 2020. Authorities responded to the protests with a large-scale crackdown in which more than 35,000 people were arrested and thousands were beaten by police.

Most opposition leaders have been imprisoned or forced to leave the country.

In the wake of these violations and flight detours, the United States, EU, UK and Canada joined forces on Monday to impose sanctions on some of Belarus’ top executives. The EU has also imposed a series of strict economic sanctions on major Belarusian exports, such as potash and petroleum products, which are common fertilizer components.

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The Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs states that sanctions hurt the general public and “border the declaration of economic warfare.” On Friday, the ministry issued another statement condemning the sanctions, promising to take “retaliation measures” in the coming weeks. “It’s time for European politicians to realize that pressure and sanctions are not the language to use in Belarus,” the statement read.

Copyright 2021 AP communication. all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.

Belarusian journalist and girlfriend in jail moved to house arrest

Source link Belarusian journalist and girlfriend in jail moved to house arrest

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