Belarus “show trials” begin

Thursday 17 February saw the beginning of the hearing against Vasil Parkiankou. The trial, which is being held in Minsk, has been described by an opposition activist as a mere “show trial”. Parkiankou is accused of smashing the windows of a government building in the course of a demonstration in December. This is a “public order offence”. He was protesting against vote rigging in the presidential election. Human rights organisation Viasna have said that more than 40 opposition members will be tried. They face up to 15 years of imprisonment.

This Saturday there will be a solidarity protest outside the Belarusian Embassy in London.