OREANDA-NEWS. The German government has condemned the decisions of the Minsk Court, which sentenced Maria Kolesnikova and Maxim Znak, members of the Coordinating Council of the Belarusian opposition, to 11 and 10 years in prison. Berlin considers these sentences «the personification of cruel actions, repression, intimidation of opposition politicians and civil society by the Belarusian regime», the official representative of the German Foreign Ministry, Andrea Sasse, said at a government press conference in Berlin, answering a question from a DW correspondent.

According to her, Kolesnikova and the Znak are among the most courageous representatives of the peaceful protest movement in Belarus, who «after the falsified presidential elections fought for freedom, democracy and human rights» in this country. In addition, Berlin condemns «the transformation of justice into an instrument of political persecution in Belarus», Sasse further pointed out.

«Germany expresses it's full solidarity to Maria Kolesnikova, Maxim Znak and all other political prisoners in Belarus. The Federal government demands the release of all political prisoners in Belarus. Of course, we will continue to put pressure on the Belarusian regime and actively support the Belarusian civil society», she added.

Earlier in the day, the Minsk Regional Court found Kolesnikova guilty of three articles of the Criminal Code of Belarus – conspiracy to seize power, creating an extremist formation and public calls for actions that threaten national security and sentenced her to 11 years in prison. At the same time, the court sentenced the Znak to 10 years in prison, finding him guilty of creating an extremist formation and plotting to seize power.