Yan Dziarzhautsau given 7 days in custody
16:38, — Politics
An opposition activist was sentenced to a term in custody for a picket with the poster “Boycott electoral farce”.
On March 26, Vitebsk's Pershamaiski district court heard an administrative case against member of the Conservative Christian Party BPF Yan Dziarzhautsau for participating in an unsanctioned mass event on March 22. He was detained on March 25 when he was returning home after celebrating the Freedom Day. He spent the night in a detention facility, Viasna human rights centre reports.
Yan Dziarzhautsau and Alena Kavalenka held a picket calling to boycott the election a day before the voting day. They raised the banner “Boycott electoral farce”. Alena Kavalenka was summoned to a police station today.
Yan Dziarzhautsau said:
“Two riot policemen came to me, asked my name, offered to get into their car and go to a police station. The investigator is making a report. I received a summons yesterday saying that I should visit the police station at 17:00. I was returning home to have dinner. I planned to visit the police later, but they caught like a criminal.”
Human rights defender Leanid Svetsik says judge of the Pershamaiski district court Natallia Karablina dismissed all motions by Dziarzhautsau during the trial on March 26. She refused to call an interpreter, didn't call the witnesses suggested by the activist and didn't allow his defence lawyer Piotr Ivanou to take part in the hearing.
Dziarzhautsau was sentenced to 7 days in custody for violating article 23.34 of the Code of Administrative Offences (participation in an unsanctioned mass event).