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Belarus journalist reveals threat to husband’s life

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Summary of story from Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, January 25, 2012

The wife of the jailed Belarusian presidential candidate Andrey Sannikau says he was “forced” to write a letter to President Alyaksandr Lukashenka in November, asking for his freedom.

Journalist Iryna Khalip, who visited her jailed husband on January 20, said in a statement on January 25 that he looked like “a man who had passed at least 10 years in Stalin’s camps”.

She said her husband passed her a note warning that he could be “killed at any time”.

Sannikau, who officially finished second behind Lukashenka in the 2010 Belarus presidential election, was arrested after the election and sentenced to five years’ imprisonment on charges of organizing mass disturbances (see WVoN coverage).

It is not clear if Lukashenka has responded to the plea.

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