Belarus is a country of political prisoners. It is not just words but our reality. Of course, there are several lists of political prisoners from various human rights organisations. They still do not reflect the real picture. Because in the current situation, when some people are recognised as political prisoners under the same articles, some are not, a systematic approach is required to change the criteria for recognition.

But today we decided that we have to pay special attention to children. Yes, there are children in Belarus who are political prisoners. This fact, unfortunately, is overshadowed by the tragedies of thousands of adults. After all, there are only ten children. But these are children, and even if it were one juvenile political prisoner, it again confirms that there is no law in Belarus.

ALIAKSANDR VINIARSKI

Date of Birth: August 19, 2003

Date of Apprehension: March 21, 2021

Charges: Part 2 of Article 293 of the Criminal Code – Participation in mass disorder

Sentence: 3 years

Type of punishment: imprisonment in an educational labour colony (for minors)

Place of confinement: Penal colony No. 2

Aliaksandr Viniarski, a resident of Brest, was sentenced by Minsk Leninski Borough Court to three years in the penal colony on charges of participation in mass riots (part 2 of Article 293 of the Criminal Code). At the time of his arrest and sentencing, he was a minor. According to the investigation, during a protest action in the centre of Brest after the election, the defendants rudely violated the public order, hit the police with their hands and feet and various objects. They used planks, sticks, street rubbish bins, fragments of benches, paving slabs and asphalt, bottles, stones, metal bolts, paint cans and fireworks.

SIARHEI HATSKEVICH

Date of Birth: December 19, 2003

Date of apprehension: March 10, 2021

Charges: Part 2 Article 293 of the Criminal Code – Participation in mass disorder

Sentence: 3 years

Type of punishment: imprisonment in an educational labour colony (for minors)

Place of confinement: Penal Colony No. 2

Siarhei Hatskevich is an 11th grade student from Brest. At the time of sentencing, he was underage. Police opened a criminal case for participation in mass riots against him. Siarhei was kept under surveillance until his trial. On March 10, 2021, at the Maskouski District Court of Brest, Siarhei and eight other persons involved in the case were sentenced. Siarhei Hatkevich got sentenced to three years in an educational colony.

MIKITA ZALATAROU

Date of Birth: May 12, 2004

Date of apprehension: August 11, 2020

Charges brought:

ч. Article 293(1) of the Criminal Code – organisation of mass riots

Art. Article 364 of the Criminal Code – Violence or threat of violence against an officer of internal affairs bodies

Article 295 of the Criminal Code – Violence or threat of violence against an officer of the law enforcement agencies. Criminal Code, art. 295 – Unlawful acts about firearms, ammunition and explosives

Sentence: 4,5 years

Type of punishment: imprisonment in an educational labour colony (for minors)

Place of confinement: Penal Colony No. 2

Mikita Zalatarou is suffering from epilepsy. His father told journalists that Mikita had been beaten in police and pre-trial detention. His lawyer filed a complaint about this, but the authorities found no corpus delicti. Nikita stated in court that he was beaten on December 29, in the Homel detention centre. Also, the teenager stated in court that he was not given any pills in the detention facility. “The guard said: “You’re political, you’ll die,” said the juvenile.

Along with Leonid Kavaliou and 25-year-old Dzmitry Karneeu, he was charged with three articles of the Criminal Code for the events of August 10. Mikita Zalatarou refused to testify, exercising his right not to testify against himself. Judge Dzmitry Deboy punished the minor Zalatarou with five years in an educational colony.

After the verdict, Mikita became hysterical. He threw himself on the bars and shouted: “Let me out of here!”

Later, another criminal case appeared against Mikita Zalatarou. According to the materials, Mikita “deliberately tripped the pre-trial detention facility employee, Lukhkin, as a result, he fell to the floor, and when he got up, he leaned Mikita against the wall, but the teenager grabbed Lukhkin by the hair and neck, causing physical pain and beating the victim and also expressed the threat of violence towards the employee Khovbok and her relatives”. Each of the injured employees of the pre-trial detention facility demanded compensation of 1,000 rubles.

Mikita Zalatarou admitted guilt but added: “It was not violence, but resistance. I said the insulting words out of emotion”.

The guy repeatedly alleged torture and beatings in the pre-trial detention centre. He was sentenced to 1,5 years in a general regime colony under Article 364 of the Criminal Code (“violence or threat of violence against an internal affairs officer”). By adding the previous sentence (5 years in a penal colony) to the new one, the total term for Mikita was 4,5 years in an educational labour colony. Mikita is regularly placed in an isolation cell in the penal colony.

MAKSIM IMKHOVIK

Date of Birth: February 8, 2004

Date of detention: July 12, 2021

Indicted: Part 2 Article 293 of the Criminal Code – Participation in mass riots

Sentence: 3 years

Type of punishment: imprisonment in an educational labour colony (for minors)

Place of confinement: Penal Colony No. 2

Maksim Imkhovik is the defendant in the criminal case of mass riots in Brest, brought after the protest actions in the city after the presidential election. Maksim is a minor. He got charged under part 2 of article 293 of the Criminal Code (participation in mass riots on August 10). Imkhovik was at large until the trial. On July 12, in Leninski Court of Brest, Maksim Imkhovik was sentenced to three years of the educational colony. He was taken into custody in the courtroom.

DANIIL KALESNIKAU

Date of Birth: December 1, 2003

Date of Apprehension: June 28, 2021

Charges: Article 342 of the Criminal Code – organisation and preparation of actions seriously violating public order, or active participation in them

Sentence: 1 year and 3 months

Type of punishment: Imprisonment in an educational labour colony (for minors).

Place of confinement: Penal Colony No. 2

Daniil Kalesnikau is a juvenile resident of Zhlobin, sentenced to one year and three months in the juvenile reformatory. Daniil got charged under Article 342 of the Criminal Code (group actions that grossly violate the public order).

The reason for the case was that on the night of August 9-10, 2020, Daniel and his father, Vitali Kalesnikau, went downtown to the square. They stood there together in a hitch in the front row, with other persons shouting slogans. The investigation believes they obstructed the movement of public transport.

Daniil’s father, Vitali Kalesnikau, was convicted under Article 339 of the Criminal Code (hooliganism) and Article 172 of the Criminal Code (involvement of a minor in an offence) for a fight with a passer-by, which took place the same evening. And later also under Article 342 of the Criminal Code. On June 28, 2021, after the sentence pronouncing, Daniil was taken into custody in the courtroom.

EDUARD KUDYNYUK

Date of Birth: December 23, 2003

Date of apprehension: May 21, 2021

Charges: Part 2 Article 293 of the Criminal Code – Participation in mass disorder

Sentence: 3 years

Type of punishment: Imprisonment in an educational labour colony (for minors)

Place of confinement: Penal Colony No. 2

Eduard Kudyniuk, a juvenile from Brest, was sentenced by Minsk Leninski Borough Court to three years in the penal colony on charges of participation in a mass riot (part 2 of article 293 of the Criminal Code). Another 12 people were convicted together with him.

According to the investigation, during a protest action in the centre of Brest after the election, the defendants rudely violated public order, pogromed, hit the police with their hands and feet and various objects. They used planks, sticks, street rubbish bins, fragments of benches, paving tiles and asphalt, bottles, stones, metal bolts, paint cans and pyrotechnic products.

IVAN PATSEICHUK

Date of Birth: January 20, 2004

Date of his arrest: July 12, 2021

Charges: Part 2 Art. 293 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. Article 293(2) of the Criminal Code – Participation in mass riots

Sentence: 3 years

Type of punishment: Imprisonment in an educational labour colony (for minors).

Place of confinement: Penal Colony No. 2

Ivan Patseichuk is a defendant in a criminal case on mass riots in Brest, brought after the protest actions in the city after the presidential election. Ivan is a minor. He got charged under part 2 of article 293 of the Criminal Code (participation in mass riots on August 10). Pateychuk was at large until the trial. On July 12, in Leninski Borough Court of Brest, Ivan Pateichuk was sentenced to three years of the educational colony. He was taken into custody in the courtroom.

VITALI PROKHARAU

Date of birth: May 3, 2003

Date of apprehension: February 8, 2021

Charges: Article 342 of the Criminal Code – organisation and preparation of acts gravely violating public order, or active participation therein

Art. Criminal Code: Article 364 – Violence or threat of violence against an officer of internal affairs bodies.

Sentence: 2 years

Type of punishment: Imprisonment in an educational labour colony (for minors).

Place of imprisonment: Penal colony No. 2

Vitali Prokharau is an 18-year-old resident of Zhlobin. He got sentenced under two articles of the Criminal Code: part 1 of article 342 (organisation or active participation in the group actions that grossly violate the public order) and article 364 (violence or threat of violence against a police officer). According to the indictment, at the protest in August 2020, Prokhorov threw at least one stone at the auto, which caused material damage to the vehicle. The guy was detained the same day by riot police and severely beaten.

“For two hours, they abused him. They taught him how to live, insulted him, told him they would put him away for a thousand years. Strapped down, he was punched in the eye. His back was covered in marks from the truncheons. His legs were wounded, he had a black eye, bumps on his head, and bruises all over his body. He limps on both legs,” Vitaliy’s stepfather told journalists about the boy’s condition after his arrest.

Prokharau said he did not throw the stone, but to “get publicity on his Instagram,” he bragged about breaking the windshield of the prison truck. It was recorded on his mobile phone and uploaded to Telegram. On February 8, 2021, Vitali Prokharau got sentenced to two years in an educational labour colony. In mid-January 2022, it became known that the pardon was denied.

DZIANIS KHOZEY

Date of birth: October 9, 2003

Date of apprehension: March 10, 2021

Charges: Part 2 Article 293 of the Criminal Code – Participation in Mass Riots

Sentence: 3 years

Type of punishment: imprisonment in an educational labour colony (for minors)

Place of confinement: Penal Colony No. 2

Dzianis Khozey is a sophomore at a college in Vysokoe. Police brought a criminal case under part 2 of article 293 of the Criminal Code (participation in a mass riot) against Dzianis for the election protests on August 10. Dzianis was kept under surveillance until his trial. On March 10, 2021, in Maskouski District Court of Brest, Dzianis and eight other persons involved in the criminal case were sentenced. Dzianis Khozey got sentenced to three years imprisonment in an educational colony.

MAKSIM SHATOKHIN

Date of birth: April 23, 2004

Date of apprehension: July 19, 2021

Charges: Part 2 Article 293 of the Criminal Code – Participation in Mass Riots

Sentence: 3 years

Type of punishment: Imprisonment in an educational labour colony (for minors)

Place of confinement: Penal Colony No. 2

Maksim Shatokhin is a resident of Brest, involved in a criminal case on mass riot (part 2 of article 293 of the Criminal Code), brought after the post-election protests in the regional centre. Before the trial, he was under house arrest. At the trial on July 19, the preventive measure got changed, and Maksim was taken into custody in a pre-trial detention facility.

On August 12, 2021, the Leninski District Court of Brest pronounced the verdict on the third part accused of rioting during the events of August 9-10, 2020. Judge Sviatoslav Kalina found the guilt in the case under part 2 of article 293 of the Criminal Code proven and punished Maksim Shatokhin with three years of imprisonment.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*