Siarhei Kavalenka Placed in Prison’s Medical Unit

Siarhiei Kavalienka has been placed in the medial unit of Mahiliou prison after he had spent 16 days in a disciplinary cell.

According to Aliena Kavalenka, her husband was put into the disciplinary cell for nine days in late July, immediately after a three-day meeting with his family members, and then he had his term in the cell extended by seven days.

“He was to leave the cell on August 14, but yesterday I learned that he was in the medical unit,” Mrs. Kavalienka said.

She said she did not know why he had been placed in the medical unit. “For some reason he is being kept in an isolated ward,” she said. “They have allowed us to deliver certain medicines for him, including medicines for liver, kidney, stomach and pancreas problems. I don’t know what diseases he has, but his health condition apparently deteriorated when he was held in the disciplinary cell.”

Siarhiei Kavalenka, a member of the Conservative Christian Party, was sentenced to a suspended three-year prison term in 2010 for putting a white-red-white flag on top of Viciebsk’s tallest Christmas tree in early January. On December 19, 2011, Mr. Kavalenka was arrested at home on a charge of violating probation rules and placed in the Viciebsk detention center. He went on a hunger strike following his arrest, which lasted about two months with some breaks, and reportedly lost nearly 40 kilograms of weight.

On February 24, Siarhiei Kavalenka he was sentenced to two years and one month in prison. The Vitsyebsk Regional Court rejected his appeal against the sentence on May 18.At the end of June, Mr. Kavalienka applied for a presidential pardon.

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