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Belarusian Spy Trial Begins Behind Closed Doors

VITSEBSK, Belarus -- The trial of Belarusian opposition activist Andrey Haydukou, who is charged with high treason and espionage, has gotten under way.

It began on June 12 in eastern Belarus and is being held behind closed doors. Haydukou, a youth activist from the northern city of Navapolatsak, was arrested in November.

Belarus's KGB says he was detained while in possession of materials that might be of interest for foreign secret services.

In a letter written from prison, Haydukou said he had been charged with attempting to threaten national security and accused having contacts with the U.S. Embassy and the CIA.

Haydukou was an opposition presidential candidate's aide in 2011.

If found guilty, he could be sentenced to 15 years in prison.

Haydukou's relatives and colleagues say the case is politically motivated.
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