Aleh Vouchak and Aliaksandr Kamarouski, co-heads of the organising committee of republican association of veterans of the Soviet War in Afghanistan “Defenders of Homeland”, sent an appeal to Prosecutor General Aliaksandr Kaniuk.
The veterans ask him to take Mikalai Autukhovich’s case under control and replace his punishment with a softer one – house arrest or community works, human rights activist Aleh Vouchak told Belorusski Partizan website.
“We know that Mikalai Autukhovich cut his abdomen in Hrodna prison No. 1 on September 3 protesting against the prison authorities who want to give him the status of a persistent violator of prison rules. His current disciplinary sanction expires in September. As far as we know, Mikalai Autukhovich has two disciplinary sanctions due to cavils from the prison authorities. If he receives a third sanction, he will be declared a persistent violator of prison rules.
Autukhovich’s term expires in six months, so he is not interested in violating the rules. We asked the Prosecutor General to check if the sanctions were imposed on him on legal grounds and take Autukhovich’s case under personal control. Under article 92 of the Criminal Procedure Code, punishment can be softened – it can be replaced by house arrest or community works. We understand that Autukhovich’s offence (possession of five cartridges for a hunting rifle) is not dangerous for society. Mikalai Autukhovich has 10 medals, 3 of which were given for combat services. Autukhovich needs dental treatment, but it is impossible in prison.
We think the punishment for Autukhovich should be softened,” Aleh Vouchak said.
We remind that businessman from Vaukavysk cut his abdomen with a razor on September 3 in prison No. 1 in Hrodna. The political prisoner protested against illegal sanctions from the prison authorities, human rights defenders report.
Mikalai Autukhovich, a veteran of the Soviet War in Afghanistan, was sentenced in May 2010 to 5 years in a maximum security prison for possessing five cartridges for a hunting rifle.