Updated at 13:19,16-08-2022

Byalyatski allowed to phone home

The jailed head of Viasna human rights centre, Ales Byalyatski, has phoned home from a penal colony in Babruisk.

His wife Natallya Pinchuk says she has not received letter from him for several weeks, so the short telephone conversation was a big event, Radio Racyja reports.

Ales Byalyatski knows that his flat, where Viasna office located, had been seized. He knew it would happen.

"He took note of the information about the office seizure. It is the event he expected to happen. He says he is okay. His voice is cheerful. He seems to be in a good mood. The call means he is all right so far."

Ales Byalyatski was sentenced to 4.5 years in prison and confiscation of property for alleged tax frauds. He didn't admit his guilt. According to human rights activists, the reason for prosecution of Byalyatski was his human rights activities. Accusations of suppression of his personal income were not proven in the court. He spent the money on human rights activities, including aid to repressed people.