A Belarusian philosopher, imprisoned since August, is on hunger strike

Uladzimir Mackievic (Matskevich), a Belarusian philosopher who criticized Alexander Lukashenko, the country’s longtime dictator, has been in prison since last August, accused of “organizing actions that seriously violate public order”. Due to the lack of progress in his file, he started a hunger-strike February 4.

Yesterday, the 15th, he went on a “dry” hunger strikeconsuming neither food nor water.

Considered a political prisoner, Mackievič, according to PEN International, “is targeted for his opinions and writings critical of the Belarusian authorities”. The organization “calls for his immediate and unconditional release and the dropping of all charges against him”.

The philosophy department of the Central European University published last Monday a declaration about imprisonment:

The CEU Department of Philosophy expresses its solidarity with Uladzimir Matskevich, a philosopher and energetic critic of public affairs in Belarus. Matskevich has been detained since August 4, 2021, but his case has not been investigated and is not moving forward. We are deeply concerned about this case and call for the immediate release of Uladzimir Matskevich.

A petition is available for people to sign. here. He notes that “the investigation has not advanced. All procedural actions are kept secret; there is no information on any charges against him, including new charges. The petition calls for Mackievič to be released while he is investigated and for a trial date to be set.

(via Peter Singer)

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