The European Humanities University in Lithuania is demanding the release of Sofia Sapega, a student, citizen of Russia, who was detained in Minsk together with Belarusian opposition journalist Roman Pratasevich, the university's press service reports.
“The University insists on providing immediate consular assistance to Sofia. In addition to that, EHU calls on international partners, donors, and human rights defenders to assist in releasing Sofia,” the statement says.
The university also said that the student was returning with her boyfriend from vacation, Sofia was getting prepared for the defense of her Master’s thesis in Vilnius.
“As a result of a cover operation by the Belarusian authorities, the student was detained by the Administration of the Investigative Committee for the city of Minsk on groundless and made-up conditions,” the university said.
They also stated that the community of EHU categorically condemns the impunity of Belarusian authorities and demands the fulfillment of international obligations of Belarus as well as ensuring rights and freedoms of citizens, as provided in the Constitution of Belarus.
As it was reported earlier, the founder of the largest opposition telegram channel of Belarus NEXTA, journalist Roman Protasevich, was detained in Minsk. The plane with Roman Protasevich on board flew from Athens to Vilnius. Suddenly, the plane gave a distress signal, changed course and made an emergency landing at the Minsk National Airport. The emergency landing was caused by a mining signal.
Later, European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen called for swift sanctions after Belarus’s authoritarian ruler forced a Ryanair plane to land in Minsk and detained a prominent opposition journalist.
The US and a number of European countries urged to suspend flights over Belarus.