(Prague, Czech Republic)
RFE/RL's Belarus Service, Radio Svaboda, is devoting all of today's broadcasts and online stories to the plight of Belarusian political prisoners.
A primetime six-hour special tells the stories of seven jailed men who are considered political prisoners by Belarusian human rights advocates. The program -- and accompanying online content -- includes interviews with the men's friends, families, religious leaders and government officials. Airing from 6pm - midnight Minsk time, it will also feature live calls from listeners.
On Radio Svaboda's website
, the directors of RFE/RL services broadcasting to Armenia, Azerbaijan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan are relating similar stories of political prisoners
past and present in their countries.
In May, Radio Svaboda published "One Day in the Life of a Political Prisoner," a book profiling 41 Belarusians who were imprisoned by Alyaksandr Lukashenka's regime for political reasons between 1996 and 2008. About Radio Svaboda
RFE/RL’s Belarus Service, known locally as Radio Svaboda, remains one of the few sources of objective and balanced information accessible to Belarusians in their own language. Radio Svaboda broadcasts six hours a day on short wave and cross-border medium wave. Called "Europe's last dictatorship," Belarus is the only country in Europe that does not permit local RFE/RL radio broadcasts.