Belarus opposition activist gets 3-year sentence for slandering president

Belarus opposition activist gets 3-year sentence for slandering president

[JURIST] An opposition activist who was critical of Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko [official website; BBC profile] during his most recent presidential campaign [JURIST report] has been sentenced to three years in jail by a Belarus [JURIST news archive] court. Nikolai Razumov was arrested on March 14 after making comments that Lukashenko is connected to the disappearances of opposition leaders Yuri Zakharenko, Viktor Gonchar and Anatoly Krasovsky [US State Department backgrounder].

Rights activists have voiced concerns that Razumov's health issues, including the fact that he only has one lung and one-third of a stomach, will pose a problem during his jail term. Lukashenko ran against and defeated opposition candidate Alexander Milinkevich [campaign website; Wikipedia profile] in March for the presidential seat amidst allegations of rampant voting fraud [JURIST report]. Hundreds of activists have since been arrested [JURIST report] for protesting against Lukashenko's win, including Milinkevich [JURIST report]. From Russia, MosNews has more.