(ANSA) - MOSCOW, NOVEMBER 28 - Nobel Peace Prize winner Ales Beliatski, a longtime defender of human rights in Belarus, faces up to 12 years in prison for a case of "smuggling" of cash.
His NGO Viasna announced it today.
Beliatski, already in prison since July 2021 in Belarus, appears in this case together with two other arrested collaborators and a third in exile abroad, according to Viasna.
"He risks 7 to 12 years in prison", specified the NGO.
Beliatski and his collaborators are accused of having sent "a large amount of cash in an organized way" across the Belarusian border and of having "financed collective actions that seriously undermine public order".
According to Viasna, the trial date has not yet been set.
This affair is widely perceived as a revenge of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, in power since 1994, an ally of Moscow who gags any form of dissent.
Ales Beliatski won the Nobel Peace Prize this year thanks to his fight for human rights, together with the Russian Memorial Center and the NGO Ukraine Center for CivilLiberties.
Belarus had branded this award a "politicised decision".
Founded in 1996 during the massive pro-democracy protests in Belarus, Viasna started out by providing help to incarcerated people and their families.
His work then extended to the defense of human rights in general.