Collective appeal to free Belarusian Siarhei Kavalenka


Members of the public in Vitebsk, Belarus have signed a collective statement asking for Siarhei Kavalenka to be released from custody.  The 37-year-old member of the Belarusian Conservative Christian Party-Belarusian Popular Front.was sentenced to 25 months imprisonment for violating the terms of his parole on an earlier conviction on charges of  "illegally displaying the banned Belarusian national flag."

He is being force-fed in the psychiatric unit of Colony No. 3, and has lost some 23 kilograms since he began his hunger strike after being remanded in custody.

“We citizens of Vitebsk are extremely concerned about the state of health of Siarhei Kavalenka who has been on hunger strike for more than three months. He is presently in the psychiatric unit of Colony No. 3. The actions of the medical personnel are not leading to an improvement in his condition and could lead to his death. A change in the conditions of his custody and the transfer of Siarhei Kavalenka to a civil hospital could save his health and life.”

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