Political prisoner Vadzim Hurman needs medical help, as he risks going blind

According to the Human Rights Center Viasna, political prisoner Vadzim Hurman urgently needs the medical assistance of an ophthalmologist.

The political prisoner has inoperable atrophy of the optic nerves in both eyes: one eye can only see at 12%, the other – at 23%. Every four months, he has to be examined: otherwise, he can go completely blind by the time he is 30. In addition, Vadzim is a boxer and has had a detached retina.

Vadzim Hurman. Photo: rh.by

“They refused to treat us even in Baraulyany, as they don’t have the necessary equipment,” says Volha Hurman, Vadzim’s mother. “We were taken care of only by doctors of the 10th Clinical Hospital, where we had to come for examinations constantly. I brought the documents to the court and the Investigative Committee: with such a diagnosis, and it was impossible to deprive Vadzim of his freedom, any physical work in the colony would quickly threaten his eyesight. Even before the announcement, I received a call from the colony saying that my severely beaten son had been taken off the “transfer” – that’s why it took so long to get information about him. Such conditions increase the rate of visual deterioration. Vadzim can no longer see with the glasses I gave him using the old prescription: he can neither read nor write. He has sent only one letter, and I am now collecting a parcel for him. During his transfer, they took everything away from him – towels, razors, nail clippers.

Although Vadzim’s mother asked to send him to the colony in Navasady, close to Maladzechna, he was sent to Horki: now the political prisoner’s relatives have to drive 720 km in both directions to bring him parcels, and the family has no private car. In addition, bailiffs started coming to Volha to collect court-ordered claims. Vadzim’s girlfriend Viyaleta, 19, will soon give birth to twins.

Vadzim Hurman, 22, was punished with 3.5 years in prison for participating in protests. According to the prosecution, on August 9, Hurman actively participated in an unsanctioned mass event and resisted the police. Allegedly, Hurman shouted slogans, provoked citizens to active action, and threatened the police with violence.

At the trial, Hurman said that when riot police detained him on August 11, he and others were beaten and had their faces gassed. Then the severe beating continued in the courtyard of the police department. Finally, according to Hurman, he was threatened with rape, and police tried to take off his pants but stopped at the command of someone from the police department leadership.