Accessibility links

Breaking News

Five Days In Jail For Wearing Anti-Lukashenka T-Shirt

Leanid Smouzh sports his T-shirt "For Belarus Without Lukashenka."
MINSK -- A court in Minsk has sentenced a Belarusian activist to five days in jail for wearing a T-shirt with a slogan against President Alyaksandr Lukashenka.

Leanid Smouzh was found guilty of resisting police and sentenced in Lenin District Court.

Smouzh was arrested on November 10 in Minsk for wearing a T-shirt with a slogan saying: "For Belarus Without Lukashenka." He told RFE/RL he does not represent any political party.

It's the second such case in the past week. On November 4, a pensioner from the southeastern Belarusian city of Homel, Yury Rubtsou, was sentenced to three days in jail for wearing a T-shirt bearing a slogan that said, "Lukashenka, Go Away!" after refusing police requests to remove it.

Lukashenka, who has been running the country since 1994, has been criticized by human rights organizations for his authoritarian rule.
  • 16x9 Image

    RFE/RL's Belarus Service

    RFE/RL's Belarus Service is one of the leading providers of news and analysis to Belarusian audiences in their own language. It is a bulwark against pervasive Russian propaganda and defies the government’s virtual monopoly on domestic broadcast media.