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Renewed calls for release of Swiss citizen in Belarus

The demonstrations in Belarus began in the wake of last year's elections the opposition argues were rigged. Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved

A human rights group has reiterated a call for the release of a Swiss-Belarus dual national convicted for taking part in anti-government protests in the capital Minsk last year.

This content was published on February 10, 2021 - 15:47
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The organisation Libereco, a German-Swiss NGO, said it sent a letter to the Belarus foreign ministry, asking for her prison sentenced to be lifted with immediate effect.

The letter was signed by more than 80 parliamentarians from all the main Swiss political parties, LiberecoExternal link said. The campaign comes ahead of an appeals hearing in Minsk next week.

The 51-year old dual national was arrested and given a 30-month jail term in December for taking part in a women’s protest against the country’s president, Alexander Lukashenko in Minsk last September

It is the latest in a series of efforts to secure the release of protesters in Belarus.

Libereco says more than 240 people are being held and 70 of them are serving sentences as political prisoners.

Last month, a Swiss journalist was also briefly arrested by security forces in the streets of Minsk.

Lukashenko's authoritarian regime launched a violent crackdown against protests following an election last August that opponents say was rigged. He denies fraud and has remained in power with help from ally Russia.

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