You’ll probably remember the uprisings in Belarus last year, when autocrat Alexander Lukashenko very plainly falsified election results to maintain his 25-year grip on power there. Four of the 5000+ people who took to the streets in protest – antifascists Vitaliy Shishlov, Tamaz Pipiya, Timur Pipiya, and Denis Boltut – were convicted in July of this year on charges stemming from their participation in the protests, based largely on coerced confessions that were extracted under beatings and torture by regime goons. All four were given prison sentences of between five and six years.
ABC Belarus reached out to us about their cases and asked us to help provide support to pay for the legal costs involved with the four cases, as well as to provide some funds to help support the families of the four convicted antifascists. After a short discussion, we quickly came to a consensus that we needed to show international solidarity by providing real material aid to help them. We were happy to be in a position to do so.