”Siarhei Kavalenka’s health condition arouses concern. Every effort bent by the family members and local democratic activists to his immediate release yielded no results,” human rights center Viasna quotes the petition which was sent to such diplomatic and humanitarian organizations as the OCSE, the United Nations, the World Health Organization, embassies of Sweden, Russia, the USA, etc. The Amnesty International was informed of the persecution of the opposition activist as well.
“We call on governments and parliaments of democratic countries, international humanitarian and human rights organisations, all people of good will to save Siarhei Kavalenka, keep him alive and preserve his health,” as the petition says.
The activist of the Conservative Christian Party of the Belarusian People’s Front (CCP-BPF) was repeatedly detained for organising a number of protest actions. In May 2010 Siarhei Kavalenka received three-year suspended sentence for hanging out a white-red-white flag on the 40-meter New Year Tree in the center of Vitsebsk. This action was defined as “major violation of public order”.
On December 19, 2011 Kavalenka was arrested in connection with criminal proceedings under Art. 415 of the Criminal Code (evasion of liberty restraint service). Being accused of violation of parole and facing three-year imprisonment he went on hunger-striking in protest.
The detainee’s wife is on her maternity leave taking care of two children, thus they are practically left in destitute. Representatives of civil society organisations organized a fund-raising campaign in support of Siarhei Kavalenka’s family.