Can political pressure end this nightmare?
BILD met the parents of the Belarusian blogger Roman Protassewitsch (26), who had Minsk dictator Lukashenko taken from a hijacked Ryanair plane and locked in prison (BILD reported).
When Natalia Protassewitsch (46) tells that Sofia, her son’s friend, was able to report for the first time from the KGB prison, the mother begins to cry. There are tears of desperation that she and her husband have had to watch for weeks how their son is shown with traces of torture on state television, in the middle of Europe.
The parents have also been fleeing the regime of dictator Lukashenko for ten months and are currently in Poland.
“It was made clear to us that we were being arrested for our son’s work. So we had to pack up our things at night on August 17th and left the country, ”says the blogger’s father, Dmitri Protassevich (48). “We had to leave our beloved homeland, even though we have never been politically active. I was even in the military until 2019. “
On May 23, when the Ryanair plane in which Roman sat with his girlfriend, Sofia Sapega, was forced to land in Belarus, the parents learned through the messenger service Telegram that their son had been arrested.
“According to Sofia, my son managed to tell her to stay away from him because he hoped that nothing would happen to her then,” says Natalia Protasevich.
But this hope was in vain: Sofia is also in custody. She faces up to 12 years imprisonment for allegedly organizing mass unrest.
“The letters we have sent Roman since he was kidnapped are not being delivered to him. Even his lawyer cannot talk to us freely on the phone, ”says father Dmitri bitterly. “Instead, the state has already published two videos in which he makes forced confessions. You can see clear signs of torture: His nose is crooked. It’s probably broken. He has bruises on his neck. An expert told us that they were strangle marks. “
And then Roman’s mother turns directly to Chancellor Angela Merkel, who is sitting at the table of the most powerful in the world at the weekend: “We ask you very much to help us to get all innocent people out of prisons. They urgently need help because they are exposed to sadism and violence on a daily basis.
Please stop Lukashenko! Every additional day, no, every additional hour that goes by costs innocents, including children, their lives. ”