Ex-political prisoner detained for drawing graffiti in Minsk

Zmitser Paliyenka and Yauhen Chulitski were detained on Monday.

A day before, a graffiti including the inscription ‘Cops Kill People’ and the acronym ACAB appeared on the fence on Partyzanski Avenue.

The video published by the Black Rose features two masked young men covering the fence with graffiti. Their faces are not visible, but the police reportedly managed to identify them.

Zmitser and Yauhen are accused of property damage (Article 341 of the Criminal Code), a criminal case has been opened against them. The young men may be fined, ordered to public works or even sentenced to a prison term.

The activist’s defense lawyer is going to meet with investigators over the case, Paliyenka’s friend Maryna Kasinerava told belsat.eu.

In October 2016, Paliyenka was given a suspended sentence of 2 years for allegedly attacking a policeman during the bicycle campaign “Critical Mass”, which took place in Minsk. In addition, the activist was charged with committing a crime under Part 2 of Article 343 of the Criminal Code (production and distribution of pornographic materials or items of a pornographic nature).

Last year, Paliyenka was arrested again: on April 7, 2017, the court overturned the deferment and sent the activist to serve the remainder of his term in a prison in Babruisk. There he was regularly placed in a punishment cell, the administration also pressured the activist psychologically.

The international human rights organization Amnesty International recognized Paliyenka a prisoner of conscience.

Former political prisoner Paliyenka to face trial for missing lectures