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Belarusian Soldier Appeals To UN Over University Expulsion

HOMEL, Belarus (RFE/RL) -- A Belarusian soldier has filed a complaint with the UN's Human Rights Committee in Geneva over his expulsion from university and for being fined by officials, RFE/RL's Belarus Service reported.

Zmitser Zhaleznichenka, who serves in a railroad-troops unit in the eastern town of Zhlobin, said the expulsion was politically motivated.

Zhaleznichenka, a top math student at Homel University, was expelled from school in 2007, detained, and fined for hooliganism and refusal to obey police.

He was reinstated to university but expelled again shortly thereafter and drafted into the army.

Zhaleznichenka says officials are trying to punish him because of his civic activism. In protest, Zhaleznichenka is refusing to take his army oath.