Political prisoner Zmitser Furmanau kept in punishment cell in Vitsebsk colony for about 40 days

Upon his arrival in penal colony Nr 3 in Vitsebsk region (Vitsba-3), political prisoner Zmitser Furmanau was never sent to his detachment.

Мinsk, 27 July 2020. Photo: Belsat

After being in quarantine, he was immediately put in punitive confinement. The inmate is still being held there.

Furmanau has not been released from a disciplinary cell, moreover, he has been placed there again for several days for unknown reasons, the Telegram channel They Have A Right has reported on Friday. According to human rights centre Viasna, Furmanau has been kept there for 38 days. Last week, the prisoner’s relatives asked for people’s support and spreading information about his situation.

Hrodna resident Dzmitry (Zmitser) Furmanau was detained on 29 May 2020 during a picket to collect signatures for the nomination of Svyatlana Tsikhanouskaya as a candidate for presidency; he was a regional coordinator of the team. On the same day Svyatlana’s husband Syarhei Tsikhanouski and his associates were arrested.

Furmanau was charged under Part 1 Article 342 (‘organisation and preparation of actions that grossly violate public order’) of the Criminal Code. He was awaiting the trial in the Hrodna prison, where he was repeatedly placed in solitary confinement. Judge Volha Bekushava sentenced him to two years of imprisonment in a minimum security penal colony.

The Belarusian human rights community recognised Zmitser Furmanau as a political prisoner.

‘He might have been beaten there’. Zmitser Furmanau put in isolation cell, meeting with family cancelled