European athletes body calls for release of detained Belarusian basketball player

    Leuchanka looks on against Brazil in the Women's Basketball Preliminary Round Group A match during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games.

    (CNN)A European athletic body -- European Elite Athletes Association -- has called for the immediate release and closure of any proceedings against a top female Belarusian basketball player, Yelena Leuchanka.

    According to the body, Leuchanka was arrested last Wednesday at Minsk Airport and sentenced to 15 days in prison over her participation in protests against President Alexander Lukashenko's disputed re-election.
    "We condemn the arbitrary and violent treatment of the protesters and using any other type of pressure or repressions, including sporting and economic, against the Belarusian athletes," read the EU Athletes statement.
    It added that Leuchanka planned to leave the country to receive scheduled medical treatment abroad.
    CNN has reached out to the Belarusian Interior Ministry for comment.
    Leuchanka (middle) holds the ball between Turkey's point-guard's Birsel Vardarli Demirmen (left) and Olcay Cakir (right).
    The 37-year-old is a center for the Belarus women's national basketball team, a former player at several WNBA clubs in the United States and a two-time Olympian.
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