Marfa Rabkova’s (27) second birthday in prison

Today, January 6, the Norwegian Helsinki Committee honours the 27th birthday of Marfa Rabkova – an activist from the Belarusian human rights organisation Viasna. Rabkova is spending her second birthday in the Belarusian penal system.

Since its founding in 1996, Viasna (Spring) has monitored and documented human rights abuses in Belarus and provided legal and financial help to political prisoners. During the severe repressions that followed the presidential election of 2020, Viasna had a key role in documenting torture and other forms of abuse in the country.

Rabkova was detained by the authorities in September 2020 in the Belarusian capital Mensk, where she is facing up to 20 years in prison on trumped-up charges. Since being detained, Rabkova has been denied proper medical treatment for a number of illnesses, and her application to attend her father’s funeral was dismissed.

It is testament to the repressive system of Aliaksandr Lukashenka’s Belarus, that people who legitimately document human rights violations – particularly those committed by the authorities – are routinely prosecuted, imprisoned and denied access to basic services.

As of today, there are 968 political prisoners in Belarus, who need our moral support. Please consider writing a letter to Rabkova, on the following address:

Marfa Rabkova
Pre-trial detention center No. 1
220030, Mensk
vulitsa Valadarskaha 2

The Norwegian Helsinki Committee condemns the treatment of Marfa Rabkova and demands her immediate release.

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