US, UK call for release of 'political prisoners' in Belarus

ANI
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Washington [US], November 2 (ANI/Sputnik): The United States and the United Kingdom urged Belarus to release "political prisoners" and all those detained for participation in the anti-government demonstrations in the East European country, representatives of the US and the UK at the UN Human Rights Council's Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of Belarus' human rights record said on Monday.

"Immediately release all political prisoners [in Belarus] and those detained for participation in election-related protests," a US spokesperson said at the UPR.

The US also called on Minsk to immediately cease the "brutal crackdown" on demonstrators.

"Release those arbitrarily detained and investigate all allegations of torture, cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, particularly related to people in detention," a spokesperson from the UK said.

In addition, London urged Minsk to lift the restrictions on independent media and freedom of speech.

Protests in Belarus, triggered by incumbent Alexander Lukashenko's victory in a presidential election that the opposition considers to have been rigged, have been ongoing since mid-August. The opposition and its supporters believe that Svetlana Tikhanovskaya was the true victor. The police forces have used tear gas, rubber bullets and other violent measures to disperse the crowds of protesters. (ANI/Sputnik)