“It was with great concern that we received the news of Viktar Babryka, who attempted to take part in the presidential election in Belarus, being hospitalized, and who is now a political prisoner; the responsibility for the life and health of those innocently jailed rests entirely with the Minsk authorities,” stated the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
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Independent Belarusian media have reported that Viktar Babaryka, who attempted to run in the 2020 presidential election in Belarus and has been jailed in the aftermath, has been transferred to a hospital.
Babaryka has been sentenced by Lukashenka’s regime to 14 years in prison for “financial machinations”.
Babryka has been serving his term in a prison colony in Navapolatsk. According to unofficial reports disseminated via social media, he has been transferred to a hospital bearing what was described as “marks of battery”.
The Polish Ministry of Foreign affairs issued a statement regarding Babaryka’s reported situation.
“It was with great concern that we received the news of Viktar Babryka, who attempted to take part in the presidential election in Belarus, being hospitalized, and who is now a political prisoner serving a 14-year prison sentence” the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement.
As stressed in the statement, “this is another recent sign that attest to the very poor treatment of prisoners of conscience, whose number in Belarus, only according to official estimates, is reaching nearly 1,500 individuals.”
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The Polish foreign ministry also raised alarm about the fact they have not heard from many Belarusian social activists imprisoned by the Lukashenka regime.
“The responsibility for the life and health of those innocently jailed rests entirely with the Minsk authorities. We expect that regular contact of the families of those jailed is granted immediately, as well as that their rights are respected,” the statement read.
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The statement also demanded that Andrzej Poczobut, a jailed journalist and activist of the Polish minority in Belarus, as well as all other political prisoners, be released.
Babaryka’s staff have confirmed on the Telegram app that the oppositionist is now in hospital. The Zerkalo independent news outlet reported, citing anonymous sources, that Babaryka has been hospitalized at the surgical ward.
On July 6, 2021, Belarus’s Supreme Court sentenced Babaryka to 14 years in prison for supposedly accepting bribes and embezzlement, as well as for setting up an organized crime group.
Babaryka denies the charges.