Accessibility links

Posters Of Jailed Belarusian Opposition Leader Appear In Vitsebsk

The posters appeared on walls and fences throughout Vitsebsk.

The posters appeared on walls and fences throughout Vitsebsk.

VITSEBSK, Belarus -- Some 20 posters of jailed former Belarusian presidential candidate Andrey Sannikau appeared on walls and fences in the eastern city of Vitsebsk today, RFE/RL's Belarus Service reports.

The posters with Sannikau's picture proclaimed "Andrey Sannikau -- Our President."

The Sannikau posters were on display exactly eight months after the country's controversial presidential election -- held on December 19 -- which was followed by some 15,000 opposition supporters in central Minsk protesting the official results that gave an overwhelming victory to President Alyaksandr Lukashenka.

International observers said the election was flawed and failed to meet international standards, while Belaruisan activists and other protesters said the election results were rigged.

The December 19 demonstration was forcibly dispersed and hundreds of protesters were beaten and/or arrested. Dozens were later sentenced to jail terms and other penalties.

Sannikau was found guilty of organizing "mass unrest" and sentenced to five years in jail earlier this year. He is serving his jail term at the Navapolatsak labor camp in Vitsebsk Oblast, where the posters were put on display today.

Read more in Belarusian here