The trial of Nobel Peace Prize laureate Ales Byalyatski and three other defendants is scheduled to open in a Minsk court on January 5.
Byalyatski, 60, the founder of the Vyasna-1966 human rights group, and three other Vyasna workers face up to 12 years in prison if convicted on charges of financing anti-government protests and smuggling money. One of the defendants is being tried in absentia. Supporters dismiss the charges as political retribution. Byalyatski shared the 2022 Nobel Prize with the Russian rights group Memorial and the Ukrainian Center for Civil Liberties.