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Belarusian Supreme Court to hear Polish minority activist case

An appeal by Andrzej Poczobut, a journalist and Polish minority leader who has been sentenced to eight years in prison, will be heard by the Belarusian Supreme Court on Friday.

The court will hear the case behind closed doors as it argued the lower court case also took place in this format.

Poczobut was an activist of the now-delegalised Union of Poles in Belarus (ZBP) and has been kept behind bars since March 2021. Poland demands his unconditional release and has accused the Belarusian regime of fabricating the charges of “inciting to actions to harm Belarus.”

The lower court said in its February 8 ruling that Poczobut had carried out “intentional actions aimed at inciting hostility and hatred on national, religious and social grounds.”

A day after Poczobut’s sentence was announced, Poland closed the vital Bobrowniki crossing with Belarus and followed up with further transport restrictions, saying they would be lifted if Poczobut was released.

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