The sentence was handed down by Minsk Regional Court on November 26, 2013, human rights centre Viasna reports. The convict is Eduard Lykov, 53, charged with five episodes of murder in a state of intoxication.
Mr Lykov was born in Russia, but now he is a Belarusian national having no permanent residence, The convict supposedly keeps in touch with his mother, a resident of Baranavichy (Brest region). His son lives in Russia, and his daughter – in Germany, but Mr Lykov does not maintain any contacts with them.
Andrey Paluda, a coordinator of campaign ‘Human Rights Defenders against the Death Penalty in Belarus’, notes that this case once again demonstrates that the government tends to conceal the facts of death sentences and executions.
It is noteworthy that Belarus remains the only country in Europe that uses the death penalty. In its statement on December 10, the International Human Rights Day, the EU condemned the death sentences imposed in Belarus in 2013 and urged its government to encourage a broader public discussion of the issue and immediately declare a moratorium on executions.
A high-profile case over the explosion in Minsk metro on April 11, 2011 is to be recalled: in March, 2012 Uladzislau Kavaliou and Dzmitry Kanavalau were put to death after being convicted of alleged carrying out the act of terrorism.
The death verdict to the young men delivered by the Supreme Court of Belarus on November, 30, 2011 triggered a mixed reaction in society and drew attention to the death penalty issue once again. Mr Kanavalau might have admitted legality of the judgement and refused to lodge a petition for pardon but Mr Kavaliou denied his participation in organizing three explosions and stated that in the course of investigation he had incriminated himself and Kanavalau acting under pressure of law enforcement officials.