Belarus: Jailed protest leader Maxim Znak on hunger strike

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picture captionMaxim Znak has been a outstanding determine within the protests

A number one member of the Belarus opposition council, Maxim Znak, has gone on hunger strike in jail after being charged with in search of to hurt nationwide safety.

The lawyer is amongst seven leaders of the Co-ordination Council, 5 of whom are both in jail or in exile.

In Geneva the UN Human Rights Council voted to launch nearer UN monitoring of abuses in Belarus.

Delegates deplored President Alexander Lukashenko’s post-election crackdown.

For 5 Sundays working greater than 100,000 protesters have stuffed the streets of the capital Minsk, demanding that the long-time president step down. His 9 August landslide victory has been broadly condemned as rigged.

Mr Znak’s lawyer, quoted by the unbiased web site, mentioned the activist’s hunger strike was geared toward exposing the “absurdity of prosecuting individuals for freely expressing their opinions”.

Mr Znak felt he had no different method to combat in opposition to injustice and arbitrary actions, whereas in detention, the lawyer mentioned.

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Earlier on Friday one other main council member, Sergei Dylevsky, was launched from jail, having spent 25 days in custody.

He and Nobel literature laureate Svetlana Alexievich are the one Co-ordination Council members nonetheless in Belarus and never behind bars, the Belapan information company studies.

media captionWomen attempt to rip masks off males detaining protesters

Belarus prosecutors accuse the Co-ordination Council of attempting to stage a coup.

Via videolink from Lithuania the primary opposition leader, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, addressed the UN council’s “pressing debate” – solely the sixth such debate in its 14-year historical past.

She mentioned human rights violations by the Belarusian authorities meant the worldwide neighborhood had “a proper to react in [the] strongest phrases”.

“The scope and the brutality of the intensive power utilized by the regime is in clear violation of all worldwide norms,” she mentioned.

The UN council’s vote for nearer UN human rights monitoring of Belarus got here regardless of Russian makes an attempt to water the decision down and interruptions of Ms Tikhanovskaya’s deal with by the Belarus Ambassador Yuri Ambrazevich.

The decision, drafted by the EU, requires a UN report with suggestions by the 12 months’s finish on the human rights scenario in Belarus.

UN Special Rapporteur Anaïs Marin informed the session that greater than 10,000 peaceable protesters had been “abusively arrested” and “over 500 circumstances of torture, dedicated by state brokers, have been reported to us”.

“I’ve been knowledgeable of allegations of rape, electrocution, and different types of bodily and psychological torture,” she mentioned.

The Belarus international ministry described the decision as a “harmful precedent” and accused the UN council of interfering within the nation’s inside affairs.

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