Anarchist Black Cross Belarus
How does one write letters to prisoners in Belarus so that they reach them?
Most of our comrades who have sent letters to imprisoned anarchists and anti-fascists have most likely not received any response. This is primarily due to the incredible censorship regime, which in many cases does not allow any correspondence through. This situation is an attempt to create additional pressure on prisoners and to isolate them from outside political support. For example, Nikolai Dziadok’s letters are destroyed right in front of his eyes every week by the censors. Other comrades simply do not get the letters.
For those who send letters this situation is also extremely demotivating: it is unclear whether the letter has reached the comrades or not.
That is why we recommend writing letters through our online form (at abc-belarus.org/?lang=en). You can do it in Russian or English. After we receive your letters we pass them through our own channels to the comrades in prison. This way if you send letters through our form you can be sure that the prisoners will receive your messages.
We do not have the possibility of feedback between you and the prisoners, so the correspondence will go one way until the regime collapses or the censorship is loosened (which is not expected in the near future). You can, however, continue to send letter per post parallel to using our form, if that is an important part of solidarity for you.
We ask that you do not use the form to write simple messages such as “hang in there” and so on. Take at least 15 minutes to write letters to your comrades. You can write anything you care about, but don’t write things that could cause problems for you or your imprisoned comrades.
In recent months we have also received letters for prisoners from the general list of political prisoners. We have no possibility at this stage to give them letters, and what you have sent, we have forwarded as far as possible to people who are engaged in supporting these prisoners.