Maria Kolesnikova was one of the leaders of the Belarusian protests last year. She was sentenced to 11 years in prison in Minsk on 6 September 2021. She has been in prison innocently for a year – just like over 650 other political prisoners.
The opposition politician Maria Kolesnikova and more than 650 other people are currently being detained in Belarus for exercising their human rights to freedom of expression and assembly.
We consider these detainees to be political prisoners and call on the Belarusian regime to release them immediately and unconditionally.
Since the presidential election in August 2020 in Belarus, people are being detained daily. According to the OSCE, the presidential election was rigged. In 2020 and 2021, independent observers counted more than 40,000 politically motivated arrests and documented more than 1,800 cases of state torture.
Belarusians are confronted daily with violence, arbitrary arrest, torture and repression against citizens, human rights organisations and independent journalists.
The regime of dictator Alexander Lukashenka, who has been in power for more than 27 years, is willing to use any means to stay in power.
We declare our solidarity with all politically persecuted people and demand the immediate and unconditional release of all political prisoners in Belarus.