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Treatment in intensive care: Kolesnikova should be released from the clinic


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Treatment in the intensive care unit
Kolesnikova should be released from the clinic

Belarusian opposition leader Kolesnikova is serving the remainder of her 11-year prison sentence in solitary confinement. Shortly after being transferred, she is admitted to the hospital. No one knows why she is in intensive care. Now she should be fine.

Belarusian opposition activist Maria Kolesnikova, who has been sentenced to a long prison term, is to be released from the hospital on Monday after being treated in the intensive care unit. This was announced by the Belarusian opposition, citing their father Alexander Kolesnikov, who visited the political prisoners’ doctor. Maria had breakfast and felt normal, Kolesnikov said. It is still unclear why the country’s most important prisoner needs to be treated in intensive care.

Opponents of ruler Alexander Lukashenko complained that the prosecutor still had no access to Kolesnikova and had no reliable information about her condition. He reportedly underwent surgery this week. The father only saw doctors, but not his daughter. Kolesnikova had previously been held in solitary confinement as punishment. A judge rejected a complaint against particularly harsh solitary confinement.

Kolesnikova, along with opposition leader Svetlana Dichanovskaya, who lives in exile in the EU country of Lithuania, is considered a key figure in the Belarusian opposition to Lukashenko. Both led nationwide protests in 2020 against the disputed presidential election in which Lukashenko declared himself the winner. He cracked down on the protesters with the police and judiciary. Kolesnikova was arrested in the summer of 2020 and sentenced to eleven years in prison for conspiracy. The trial, like that of other Lukashenko opponents, was seen as a political stage.

Beerbock criticized Minsk

The International Union for Human Rights (ISHR) condemned the situation of political prisoners in Belarus as “catastrophic”. In a statement, he called for independent doctors to access the detained Kolesnikova. According to ISHR, Belarus currently holds approximately 1,400 political prisoners.

The IGFM appealed to the Foreign Office to work for independent doctors and experts to access Kolasnikova. In addition, the father and the lawyer can visit her. Foreign Minister Annalena Berbach wrote on Twitter on Wednesday that the regime in Minsk should guarantee Kolesnikova’s health and release her. “Your commitment to democracy is not a crime,” Beyerbach said in his tweet.

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