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Political prisoner Vatslau Areshka turns 69 today

Trade union activist and editor of the bulletin of the Belarusian trade union of workers of the radio-electronic industry Vatslau Areshka is celebrating his 69th birthday behind bars today.

Vyachaslau Areshka is a Belarusian political scientist and public figure, an activist of the REP trade union, known as Vatslau Areshka. He was detained on April 19, 2022 after a search in the apartment. Vyacheslau was placed in the KGB pre-trial detention center and charged. In July, he was transferred to SIZO-1 on Volodarsky Street. It is known that the symbolic "godfather" of the political prisoner is the deputy of the Slovenian Parliament from the Slovenian Democratic Party Anže Logar.

The trial of REP trade union leaders, including Mr. Areshka, has been held in the Minsk City Court since November 2022. They were accused under Part 1 of Art. 361-1 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Belarus (Participation in an extremist formation); Part 3 of Art. 361 of the Criminal Code (Calls for actions aimed at causing harm to the national security of Belarus); Part 3 of Art. 130 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Belarus (Incitement of social hatred); Part 3 of Art. 361-1 of the Criminal Code (Creation of an extremist formation and participation in it).

The verdict was handed down on January 5, 2023. Independent trade union activists were found guilty. Anastasia Papko sentenced Vatslau Areshka to eight years in prison.

Many union prisoners are known to have deteriorating health during their imprisonment. Vyachaslau's eyesight deteriorated significantly.

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