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  • Barysau photographer Aliaksandr Ziankou to be tried on January 12

    The criminal case hearing will take place at 10 a.m. in Minsk City Court. Judge Zhana Brysina will preside over the session. Ziankou is charged with participating in an extremist formation. If convicted, he faces a sentence of two to six years of imprisonment or freedom restriction.

    On 22 June 2023, Ali­ak­san­dr Ziank­ou, a pho­tog­ra­ph­er, was arrest­ed at his home in Barysau. Law enforce­ment offi­cers searched his house and seized his com­put­er equip­ment.

    Pre­vi­ous­ly detained by the police, Ali­ak­san­dr Ziank­ou was not sub­ject to any admin­is­tra­tive or crim­i­nal pros­e­cu­tion. In July 2020, Ziank­ou was among 47 jour­nal­ists and pho­tog­ra­phers arrest­ed in Min­sk. They were released after an iden­ti­ty check. In Sep­tem­ber 2020, police offi­cers warned the Barysau-based pho­tog­ra­ph­er about the con­se­quences of vio­lat­ing the law.

    Ziank­ou has been work­ing as a free­lance pho­tog­ra­ph­er since 1998. He worked inde­pen­dent­ly as a pri­vate entre­pre­neur and col­lab­o­rat­ed with local inde­pen­dent pub­li­ca­tions. He also cre­at­ed award-win­ning doc­u­men­taries for Chris­t­ian film fes­ti­vals and Mag­nifikat TV shows after becom­ing inter­est­ed in videog­ra­phy. In 2015, the fes­ti­val jury rec­og­nized his cre­ative work on the recon­struc­tion of the church in the vil­lage of Zem­bin.

    In his spare time, Ali­ak­san­dr enjoyed wildlife pho­tog­ra­phy.

    Before the arrest, he had been trav­el­ing exten­sive­ly and engag­ing in cre­ative work, cap­tur­ing land­scapes, nat­ur­al phe­nom­e­na, birds, and archi­tec­tur­al mon­u­ments. In Decem­ber 2022, he held a per­son­al pho­to exhi­bi­tion.

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