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Voice of Freedom from behind Bars

An anthology of works by Belarusian political prisoners

The Anthology "Voice of Freedom from behind Bars" holds under one cover poetry, memoirs, diaries, stories and publicist articles written by citizens of the Republic of Belarus, who have been or continue to be politically persecuted. Among the authors there are both well-known poets, journalists, politicians and those whose texts get published for the first time in their life. The book was published by European Humanities University Press with financial support from Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung e.V..

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As part of cover design and as a symbolical preface, the book opens with the poem "The Voice of Freedom" by the legendary Belarusian poet Ryhor Baradulin.

One more preface, this time to outline an international perspective on the publication, was written by Dr. Hans-Gert Pottering, Member of the European Parliament, Chairman of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, President of the European Parliament ret.:

The 19th of December 2010, the night of the presidential elections in Belarus, marked the preliminary end of cautious rapprochement of Minsk to the European Union.

At that time will for freedom and civil courage brought into the streets thousands of Belarusian citizens who wanted to demonstrate their frustration with electoral manipulations. The regime of the President Alexander Lukashenko reacted with unimaginable brutality. The demonstrators were brutally battered, hundreds of them were arrested and further fined or sentenced to imprisonment. Even today nine people are still in prison for political reasons.

In order to prevent further protests the regime has tightened the laws and extended the powers of the Belarusian secret service – the KGB. Using constant surveillance and repressive measures against dissidents the secret services of the country try to maintain fear in the society even now – three years after the first wave of repressions which lasted several months immediately after the presidential elections – and thus they try to smother any, albeit potential expression of dissatisfaction.

The Belarusian government tries to justify its approach with the unbelievable argument that the population is not yet mature for democracy and that Belarus must follow its own way. Thereby it openly denies the universality of the human rights.

The western community of values should not remain silent in regard to these inhuman actions, it must firmly and resolutely demand observance of human rights also in Belarus. It must help those prosecuted and convicted in Belarus for standing up for their values. This also should give voice to these brave people for them to be heard.

This collection of works of Belarusian political prisoners, which are very different in terms of genre, language, artistic professionalism and topics, provides not only insights into the experiences of the people who found themselves in the grip of the repression machine. It further represents documentation of political persecution. At the same time it’s a testimony to the bravery of the people who want to stay true to their ideals of freedom. It gives hope that Belarus will manage its way to democracy and human rights, back to the European family of common values.


  • Dr. Hans-Gert Pöttering
  • Ryhor Baradulin (Рыгор Барадулiн)
  • From the Compiler
  • Ihar Alinevich (Ігар Аліневіч | Игорь Олиневич)
  • Ales Bialiatski (Алесь Бяляцкі | Алесь Беляцкий)
  • Artsiom Grybkou (Арцём Грыбкоў | Артём Грибков)
  • Zmitser Dashkievich (Зміцер Дашкевіч | Дмитрий Дашкевич)
  • Zmitser Drozd (Зміцер Дрозд | Дмитрий Дрозд)
  • Ales Kirkevich (Алесь Кіркевіч | Алесь Киркевич)
  • Vasil Liavonau (Васіль Лявонаў | Василий Леонов)
  • Uladzimir Niakliaeu (Уладзімір Някляеў | Владимир Некляев)
  • Andrzej Poczobut (Андрэй Пачобут | Андрей Почобут)
  • Natalia Radzina (Наталля Радзіна | Наталья Радина)
  • Yauhen Sacret (Яўген Сакрэт | Евгений Секрет)
  • Paval Seviarynets (Павал Севярынец | Павел Северинец)
  • Marya Trafimava (Марыя Трафімава | Мария Трофимова)
  • Aliaksandar Frantskievich (Аляксандр Францкевіч | Александр Францкевич)
  • Aliaksandr Fiaduta (Аляксандр Фядута | Александр Федута)
  • Iryna Khalip (Ірына Халіп | Ирина Халип)
  • Paval Sharamet (Павал Шарамет | Павел Шеремет)
  • Uladz Yaromenak (Уладзь Яроменак | Владимир Еременок)
Languages of the publication: original (Belarusian, Russian or Polish).

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Dr. Michael Borchard


Leiter Wissenschaftliche Dienste / Archiv für Christlich-Demokratische Politik +49 30 26996-3581 +49 30 26996-53581


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