Announcement

Minister for Europe gravely concerned at sentencing of ex-Presidential candidate Andrei Sannikov in Belarus

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

David Lidington has expressed grave concern upon hearing that Andrei Sannikov has been sentenced by a court in Belarus to a five year prison term for the organisation of ‘mass riots’.

Speaking today, Mr Lidington said:

“I am deeply concerned to learn that Andrei Sannikov, who stood as a candidate in the presidential election last December, has been sentenced by a court in Belarus to a five year prison term for the organisation of ‘mass riots’.

“We have grave concerns about the treatment of Mr Sannikov while in custody including his access to medical treatment and legal services. The conduct of his trial has marked a new low for the rule of law in Belarus. Mr Sannikov is guilty of nothing more than the peaceful expression of his opinion about the results of December’s flawed elections.

“Our thoughts are with Mr Sannikov’s family and with the families of his co-defendants in this trial: Ilya Vasilevich, Oleg Gnedchik, Feodor Mirzoyanov and Vladimir Ereomenok and with so many other families being deprived of their loved ones through politically motivated trials.

“We once more call on Belarus to cease its self-imposed isolation and to move into conformity with basic international standards of justice and human rights.”

Speaking today, Mr Lidington said: