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Belarus police monitor prominent journalist, jail – another – activist


Summary of stories from Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, August 4 and 8 2011

Belarus police plan to monitor Iryna Khalip, a journalist whose husband Andrey Sannikau ran for president, as a condition of her suspended two-year jail sentence.

Ms Khalip, a correspondent for the Moscow-based newspaper “Novaya gazeta,” was sentenced on May 16 for involvement in protests following a disputed presidential election in December

Ms Khalip has to be registered with police in Minsk and must be home by 10 p.m. every day. Police can come to her home any time after that to make sure she is there.

Her husband, a former deputy foreign minister who co-founded the Charter 97 human rights group, was sentenced May 14 to five years in a maximum-security prison.

A controversial presidential vote on December 19 resulted in President Alyaksandr Lukashenka‘s reelection. But international election monitors said the vote was flawed and neither free nor fair.

Belarusian authorities arrested Khalip and Sannikau after some 15,000 demonstrators protested the election results. Hundreds of people were arrested, including nearly all of the opposition presidential candidates.

Police also – more recently – arrested Nasta Palazhanka, an activist whose fiancee, Zmitser Dashkevich, is another – jailed – former presidential candidate, as she protested outside the jail where he is imprisoned. She is to be held in jail for 12 days.

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