Marieluise Beck: The sad climax of the show trials

Andrei Sannikov "is the first of the candidates who will face unlimited judicial arbitrariness in Belarus," said Marieluise Beck, a member of the Bundestag and the Speaker of the Green Party faction.

In Beck’s opinion, the trial of Sannikov is “the sad climax of show trials.” “The political trials remind one in a terrible way of the trials in Soviet times,” she said in a statement, reports BelaPAN.

The member of the Bundestag expressed concern over Sannikov’s state of health, and also the fact that his lawyer is forbidden to disclose details of the conditions of his detention, while there are suspicions about the practice of torture in the KGB jail.

Beck announced that within the framework of patronage over political prisoners’ human rights, the NGO Libereco is taking patronage of Sannikov.

The trial of Sannikov and a group of other people in the criminal case, about the mass disorders on 19 December, began 27 April in the Partizanskii District Court of Minsk. Sannikov is charged under Part 1 of Article 293 of the Criminal Code (organization of mass disturbances).

This is the first trial of a candidate in the Belarusian presidential election of 2010. Apart from Sannikov, five candidates have been charged under the same article of the Criminal Code: Vladimir Neklyaev, Nikolai Statkevich, Dmitrii Uss, Vitali Rymashevskii and Ales Mikhalevich.