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Blogger jailed for liking a caricature depicting Belarusian dictator dies in prison

by The Kyiv Independent news desk May 7, 2023 11:47 PM 1 min read
A protestor holds a banner “Free All Political Prisoners” during a demonstrate of solidarity with Belarusian political prisoners and against Alexander Lukashenko's dictatorship in Krakow, Poland on Jan. 16, 2022. (Photo by Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
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Mykola Klimovich, a 61-year-old blogger and social activist from Pinsk, died in prison, Human rights center Viasna reported.

In February, Klimovich was sentenced to a year in prison for reacting to a caricature depicting Belarusian dictator Alexander Lukashenko in the Odnoklasniki social network.

The blogger, who opposed the war, said during trial that his publications on social networks were related to an anti-war topic.

Despite the fact that the activist had very serious heart problems, he was placed in a pre-trial detention center, where he was held pending an appeal.

Before the court hearing on April 21, Klimovich told journalists that he is afraid of dying in prison, because he had to be constantly under the supervision of a medical staff and take “many strong drugs.” He also had a stroke and a complex heart operation previously.

“I may not live more than a month (in prison),” he said.

In July last year, Lukashenko said that Minsk and Russia's forces are “practically united” as countries of the Union State, a supranational organization consisting of the two countries.

Belarus supported Russia's war against Ukraine, not directly participating, but providing logistical support to the Russian invasion and allowing the Russian army to use its territory to launch missiles at Ukraine.



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