Updated at 15:24,15-04-2021

Andrei Sannikov: I don't think this is freedom


"My wife is held hostage, and my actions are limited. In Belarus there are no freedom, so to speak about freedom is very difficult", the former presidential candidate Andrei Sannikov said during an online conference for Polish media.

As UDF.BY wrote earlier, on April 14 Andrei Sannikov was released from prison by the decree of Alexander Lukashenko for a pardon.

"Why I was released from prison? Because it was the pressure in the first place, solidarity and support. As well as the clear position of the whole world, so that Lukashenko freed political prisoners. Thank you all", said the leader of the campaign "European Belarus".

On the question of whether Lukashenko will get something from the EU in response to the release of two prisoners of conscience, Sannikov said:

"The issue of trades with political prisoners has always been. I do not exclude that this could occur. But at the same time, we can not talk about it with confidence. There is a hope it won't happen, and now we must concentrate on continuing to fight for release of all the rest.

I know that for Lukashenko it's very difficult to make such decisions. I welcome the release of Dmitry and me, and I will welcome such steps in respect of all political prisoners".

When talking about the conditions in which his sentence was held, Andrei Sannikov said: "My sentence ended in September, and from that moment tortures began. It was a special order to exert pressure."

The politician also said, now the main task for the Belarusian democratic forces - secure the release of remaining political prisoners.