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Wife Says Jailed Belarusian Opposition Leader's Whereabouts Unclear


Jailed Belarusian politician Andrey Sannikau

Jailed Belarusian politician Andrey Sannikau

MINSK -- The wife of jailed former Belarusian presidential candidate Andrey Sannikau says she does not know where her husband is currently being detained, RFE/RL's Belarus Service reports.

Iryna Khalip told RFE/RL that Belarusian Penitentiary System Monitoring Department officials informed her on September 26 that her husband is in a detention center in the eastern city of Mahileu.

Human rights activist Krystsina Shatsikava told RFE/RL that officials at Mahileu detention center also told her that Sannikau is in their detention center.

Shatsikava added that she was told Sannikau cannot receive anything from his relatives or friends as he is "a transit inmate."

But Khalip told RFE/RL she does not trust the official version because in recent days the information about her husband's whereabouts issued by officials has been incorrect.

She added that her husband's lawyer left for Mahileu on September 26 and she will trust the official information only after the attorney sees her husband.

Sannikau was found guilty of organizing mass disorder in Minsk on December 19 and sentenced to five years in jail in May.

He was originally sent to a maximum-security labor camp in the northern city of Navapolatsak to serve his jail term.

On September 21, Khalip was informed by Navapolatsak labor camp officials that her husband would be transferred to a penitentiary in the eastern city of Babruysk on September 24.

Khalip said no one gave a reason for her husband's transfer.

When Khalip arrived at the penitentiary in Babruysk on September 26, the officials told her that her husband was not there but instead at the Mahileu detention center.

Read more in Belarusian here and here
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