Belarus opposition leader jailed before planned protest

April 30, 2017 9:58 am

In this file photo taken on February 22, 2016, opposition leader Nikolai Statkevich delivers a speech during a rally in Minsk, . (Photo by AP)

The wife of a leading opposition figure in Belarus says he has been arrested and jailed on the eve of a planned protest.
Maria Adamovich said Sunday that she was informed by police Saturday that her husband, Nikolai Statkevich, had been jailed for five days. She said that police didn’t say why.
Statkevich is one of the most prominent figures in Belarus’ beleaguered opposition.
Authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko, in office since 1994, suppresses opposition and independent media.

Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko (Photo by AFP)

Statkevich ran against Lukashenko in the 2010 election and was arrested after a large demonstration the results. He spent the next five years in prison.
An unusually widespread wave of protests broke out in Belarus this year and another has been called for Monday in the capital.
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