Taking Andrzej Poczobut and Angelika Borys as hostages, Alyaksandr Lukashenka thought that in this way Poles would withdraw from supporting Belarusians, from supporting our fight for our freedom, independence and democracy – said Aleś Zarembiiuk, head of the Belarusian House foundation in Warsaw on TVN24. According to him, the activists were put in prison for being Poles. As he added, the Polish action of solidarity with detained activists is “unprecedented”. “This pressure is very important,” he stressed.
Borys and Poczobut are in custody in Żodzina under severe conditions. The authorities accuse them of “inciting hatred”. On Thursday, six months have passed since the arrest of Borys, the head of the Union of Poles in Belarus. On Saturday, six months have passed since the detention of Poczobut, an activist of the independent Union of Poles in Belarus and a correspondent of “Gazeta Wyborcza”.
Many Polish independent media joined the action #ReleasePoczobuta initiated by the Grand Press Foundation. “Let us not let the public and politicians forget about the Poles detained without sentence by the Belarusian regime. Let the Polish media show that we do not forget about our colleague” reads the appeal for the journalist’s release. At 20:30 in front of the Palace of Culture and Science in Warsaw, a solidarity campaign will take place, and the image of Poczobut will be displayed on the building of the Palace of Culture and Science throughout the night
The editorial offices of TVN24 and “Fakt” TVN, Wirtualna Polska, “Polityka”, Radio Zet, Newsweek, “Rzeczpospolita”, OKO.Press, Onet, “Tygodnik Podhalański” “, many other local newspapers as well as the” Press “magazine and the Press portal.
Poczobut and Borus “were imprisoned as Poles”
– They accuse them of preparing mass riots. But they never did anything wrong. They were imprisoned as Poles. 10 years ago, Andrzej sat as a journalist, and now he is in prison with Angelika, not because he was a member of some political party or political movement, because he was not, but only because he is a Pole – Zarembiuk said on TVN24.
In his opinion, Lukashenka, “taking Poczobut and Boris as hostages, thought that in this way Poland and Poles would withdraw from supporting Belarusians, from supporting our fight for our freedom, independence and democracy.”
Zarembiuk on Poczobut’s condition: he is probably tortured
When asked about the health of Poczobut, Zarembiuk replied: – Unfortunately, we know very little, because the correspondence that Andrzej sends from the prison is always checked and not all letters come out and come to him.
As he said, “the whole truth is hidden and we will know it only when Andrzej leaves the prison in which – very likely – he is tortured”. – Unfortunately, such information has already reached his wife from prison several times – he added.
Zarembiuk said that the Belarusian authorities had recently released several political prisoners, but – as he pointed out – “through a degrading procedure, only because they signed a loyalty”, which Poczobut refused to sign. He added that every day more political prisoners are arrested in Belarus.
Zarembiuk: the pressure on Lukashenka is very important
– The action that is taking place in Poland today is very supportive. In fact, more support than any attempts by politicians, be it EU, Polish or American, to somehow influence the dictator Lukashenka, who sends more migrants to Poland every day. This is the way Poles are trying – said the TVN24 guest. As he said, “this action of solidarity is unprecedented, enormous”. He added that this was an action not only in defense of Poczobut, but also of all other political prisoners, of whom there are currently around 700 in Belarus.
– If Andrzej is not released in the near future, such actions, not only on a Polish scale, but also on a European scale, and perhaps even on a global scale, must be prepared and continued. This pressure is very important indeed. Every publication, every tweet of journalists, because journalists have a great influence on politicians’ decisions. And politicians, especially those in Washington and Brussels, must act very hard to release all political prisoners, emphasized Zarembiuk.
Main photo source: Forum