Bagpiper and political prisoner escapes to Poland following sentence for music

The musician was detained along with the Irdorath band. He had been behind bars since August 2.

Dzmitry Shymanski is in the center of the photo. Photo: Belsat

According to the Belarusian Rada of Culture, a bagpiper and political prisoner, Dzmitry Shymanski, left Belarus. He is currently in Warsaw.

Three weeks ago, he was sentenced to three years of restricted freedom in an open-type correctional facility for playing the bagpipes at the march on August 16, 2020. He was released from custody in the courtroom before being sent to the penitentiary facility.

Shymanski was detained on August 2, 2021, together with the musicians of the Irdorath band. He was tried for “participation in actions grossly violating public order” (Article 342 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Belarus). Human rights activists later recognized him and other detainees with Irdorath political prisoners.

Dzmitry Shymanski has played bagpipes and other instruments in various bands for 15 years, including All_Crazy, Litvinski Khmel, Cornu Copia, Javaryna, and others.