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Belarus prisoner dies after authorities fail to offer him with care: Group

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TALLINN, Estonia — A political prisoner has died in jail in Belarus after authorities failed to offer him with correct medical care, a human rights group mentioned Monday, a demise that spotlighted merciless circumstances in Belarusian prisons.

Vadzim Khrasko died of pneumonia in a penal colony close to the northeastern metropolis of Vitebsk after jail authorities had been gradual to take him to a hospital, ignoring his pleas for assist, the revered Viasna human rights heart mentioned. He died on Jan. 9, however the penal colony solely reported his demise now.

Khrasko, an data expertise specialist who died on the age of fifty, was serving a three-year sentence on costs of providing donations to opposition teams that the authorities branded “extremist.”

Political activist Leanid Sudalenka, who served his three-year time period on the similar penal colony, informed The Related Press after ending his time period that he almost died when COVID-19 swept by the ability. He mentioned that he and different political prisoners needed to put on a yellow tag on their uniforms, so that they’re simply identifiable to guards who he mentioned routinely bullied, abused and humiliated them.

Sudalenka mentioned that strategies of bullying can vary from punishment cells and full data isolation, to refusing a gathering with a lawyer and the denial of medical care and medication.

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A couple of different prisoners haven’t survived incarceration, together with artist Ales Pushkin, who died in July of a perforated ulcer after receiving no medical care, and Vitold Ashurak, whose physique was turned over to his kin in 2021 nonetheless bearing a head bandage.

Belarusian authorities have cracked down on opponents of authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko after big protests triggered by the August 2020 election that gave him a sixth time period in workplace. The balloting was considered by the opposition and the West as fraudulent.

Protests swept the nation for months, bringing tons of of hundreds into the streets. Greater than 35,000 individuals had been arrested, hundreds had been crushed in police custody and tons of of impartial media shops and nongovernmental organizations had been shut down and outlawed.

Greater than 1,400 political prisoners stay behind bars, together with leaders of opposition events and famend human rights advocate and 2022 Nobel Peace Prize winner Ales Bialiatski.

Belarusian opposition leader-in-exile Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, who was pressured to go away the nation after difficult Lukashenko within the 2020 vote, known as for an investigation into Khrasko’s demise.

“I obtained the tragic information of the demise of political prisoner Vadzim Khrasko, as a consequence of insufficient medical care,” Tsikhanouskaya mentioned. “We should act now to forestall extra deaths.”



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