MFF Hrodna Region Coordinator, political prisoner Vitold Ashurak died in the Shklou Penal Colony. The political prisoner has been serving a five-year sentence there since April 21. The previous cause of death announced to his relatives is cardiac arrest.
Letters from Vitold Ashurak have not been coming in for two weeks. His relatives say he had neither heart disease nor any previous health complaints.
The Movement For Freedom states:
- The criminal case against Vitold Ashurak and the verdict were unfounded and politically motivated.
- The death of the political prisoner was allowed by the ruling regime through his illegal imprisonment.
- A full, objective, and open investigation into the circumstances of his death must be carried out.
- In the conditions of low trust in the Belarusian law enforcement agencies, the results of their work, and politically motivated decisions, international organizations should participate in the investigation, including the UN.
The Movement For Freedom demands from the ruling regime:
- to overturn the verdict of Vitold Ashurak and rehabilitate him posthumously,
- to verify the facts, and fully and publicly disclose the truth with the publication of all the results,
- according to the results of the investigation, to punish the perpetrators of his death, should the grounds for this be established,
- invite foreign experts to participate in the investigation,
- to unconditionally and immediately release all political prisoners and those detained and convicted on political grounds.
The Movement For Freedom calls on the international community:
- to continue to put pressure on the ruling regime of Belarus to conduct an international investigation into the causes of death of the political prisoner,
- to carry out procedural steps to join the investigation process,
- to demand the release of all political prisoners and those detained and convicted on political grounds.
The Movement For Freedom expresses its sincere condolences to the relatives and friends of Vitold Ashurak. Vitold was a sincere patriot, he lived, fought, and died for Belarus.
We call on the Belarusian society to show solidarity with the family of Vitold Ashurak and all political prisoners. We must jointly respond to the threats to the lives of political prisoners, remind the society about them, and demand their unconditional release.