Vitebsk doctor Ihar Pastnou forcefully gets psychiatric treatment

Video Igor Postnov

Ihar Pastnou, a pediatrician from Vitebsk, reports about forced psychiatric treatment.

The Vitesbk district court permitted treatment “at the discretion of doctors” on August 21. The court decision hasn’t come into force yet, but Ihar Pastnou says the Vitebsk regional psychiatric hospital began to fulfil it, Human Rights Center “Viasna” informs.

Ihar Pastnou says he gets compulsory psychotropic injections. He was allowed to make a short telephone call, independent journalist from Vitebsk Uladzimir Zhyhuloiu says:

“Pastnou suddenly called and said he had one minute. He said he received compulsory injections. After the words ‘Shame on our psychiatry’ the conversation ended.”

Ihar Pastnou was going to appeal against the court decision on forced psychiatric treatment. He had a contract with a lawyer to appeal against the decision within 10 days.

Activists from Vitesbk prepared an appeal to the regional prosecutor asking to cancel the decision of judge Tatsiana Dehtsiarova from the Vitebsk district court. They wrote in a collective letter that Ihar Pastnou’s constitutional rights were violated during the trial: he wasn’t taken to the trial to be able to defend himself; he didn’t have an opportunity to find a lawyer to present his interests in court. His right to a fair trial and right to defence were violated as well as the right to free expression.

Ihar Pastnou was taken to the 2nd unit of the psychiatric hospital on August 16, some days after he had posted his appeal to people on the Internet (video in Russian). He criticises the work of certain medical facilities in the region and actions by the regional authorities. He also said he had been threatened with forced psychiatric treatment.

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