Zmitser Bandarenka, a political prisoner, after having served one third of his sentence had now a chance for an earlier release, but the prison administration decided his behavior has not improved and the punishment should continue.
Bandarenka managed to inform his wife through a phone call about the decision, but their conversation which according to the prison rules should last 15 minutes, was cut short by a prison guard.
Volga Bandarenka informed that her husband’s health condition deteriorated due to rheumatism problems intensified by the winter temperature drop. Despite that and the promise to have at least two weeks of professional medical care, he was moved from the hospital wing to a regular prison cell. Ms. Bandarenka also added that the general conditions have worsened and remind of those in KGB arrest. – Before, he used to be allowed to perform special exercise necessary for his rehabilitation. He is also force to stand for an hour and a half during the cell search, although it was prohibited by the doctors. – added Ms. Bandarenka.
She also complained about the difficulties in contacting her husband. Their last phone conversation was limited to only few minutes, and he only receives one if five letters that are sent. The prison censor allows correspondence only with the closest family members.
Last week a special prison commission convened and decided that Bandarenka has not improved his attitude, which means he will not be released earlier.
Zmitser Bandarenka was a close co-worker of a former presidential candidate Andrej Sannikov. He was sentenced to two years in a prison camp for participating in a demonstration after the presidential elections on December 19th, 2010. During his detention in KGB arrest, Bandarenka started suffering from spine problems which forced him to undergo a surgery. Physicians have warned that should the rehabilitation be neglected, he might become permanently handicapped.