BCD appeals for help Siarhei Kavalenka
Siarhei Kavalenka, an activist of the Conservative Christian Party Belarusian Popular Front (CCP BPF), lives in Vitebsk, Belarus together with his wife, two little children (6 year son and 6 months daughter) and mother.
Kavalenka has openly and continuously expressed his oppositional political views and spread information on political situation and events in the country among Belarusians. The authorities have repeatedly violated his right for freedom of expression. The court has sentenced the activist to various fines (31.10.2007; 27.03.2009; 15.09.2009; 03.11.2009 and etc.) and prison terms (25.03.2008; 21.04.2010; 09.07.2010; 24.03.2011; 24.11.2011 and etc.) for participating in political actions, which were substituted by the court for administrative violations, e.g. for hooliganism.
On January 7, 2010 Siarhei Kavalenka hung the white-red-white flag on a Christmas tree in Vitebsk above the communist star to show his attitude to Communist ideals and the dictatorial regime in Belarus. The authorities considered this as crime and on May 14, 2010 the judge Yauhen Burunou in the court of October district of Vitebsk sentenced Kavalenka to three years in prison without sending him to closed correctional institution. Thus, the authorities limited Siarhei’s freedom of movement, freedom of speech, right to work normally and provide for his family.
Later that the authorities continued persecuting Siahei by constant monitoring, interventions in his personal and family life, further reducing his working time, preventive arrests, multiple night inspections of his house, fines, warnings and intimidation. After his last arrest he was falsely accused in “disobeying the police and using foul language”. The witnesses in the court were the police officers, who gave false evidence.
On December 19, 2011 Kavalenka was detained by the police officers of the criminal executive inspection of the Pershamaiski district in Vitebsk and taken to jail. The authorities have initiated the false criminal process, accusing Siarhei of “violating of the sentence”. But actually this is their next attempt to isolate the activist from the society.
Since December 19, 2011 Mr. Kavalenka is in jail, where he started hunger strike to protest against the false accusations until he will be released from custody. The investigator and the executive authorities do not react on his strike. Kavalenka himself can not adequately react to the process as he is very weak. His mother and wife tried to pass him some water but the guards did not allow them. The doctors called by Kavalenka’s family were alson not allowed to examine him.
At present the activist’s health troubles not only his friends and relatives, but also the wide public. The steps which have been taken to release the activist and stop the hunger strike didn’t have any success.
Therefore, the Belarusian Christian Democracy Party appeals to the Belarusians abroad, the governments and parliaments of democratic nations, humanitarian organizations and all people of good will to help us to save Siarhei Kavalenka, whose life and health is are threatened.