March 24, 2017
L4L is concerned about the sentencing of lawyer Oleg Volchek. We shared our concerns in a letter to the authorities of Belarus.
Oleg Volchek is a prominent human rights lawyer and director of the non-governmental organisation Pravovaya Pomoshch Naseleniyu (Legal Aid to Population). He defends political rights and fights against the use of torture and bad conditions in Belarusian detention facilities.
According to our information, Oleg Volchek was charged with ‘taking part in an illegal mass event’, under art. 23.34 part 1 of the Administrative code, after taking part in the demonstration that took place in Minsk on 17 February 2017. Through these peaceful protests participants called on the authorities to withdraw Presidential Decree No 3 on the ‘Prevention of Social Dependence’. The hearing in the case against Mr. Volchek took place on 21 March 2017 in the Frunze district of the City of Minsk. According to our information, Mr. Volchek was sentenced to 13 days of imprisonment. The judgment against Mr. Oleg Volchek has been handed down in absentia.