Belarusian philosopher handed five-year prison term as journalist, blogger go on trial

24.06.2022 Source: RFE/RL's Belarus Service

MINSK -- Well-known Belarusian philosopher Uladzimer Matskevich has been sentenced to five years in prison over his active participation in public events questioning the official results of the August 2020 presidential poll that handed victory to authoritarian ruler Alyaksandr Lukashenka.

The Minsk regional court sentenced Matskevich on June 23 after finding him guilty of participating in unsanctioned events that disrupt social order, creating an extremist group, and insulting Lukashenka online.

Matskevich was arrested in August last year.

In February, the 66-year-old philosopher went on a two-week hunger strike, demanding a transfer to house arrest, but his demand was ignored by the authorities.