News for 18 Aug 2009

BPF member sacked for participating in rally

18.08.2009 BPF member sacked for participating in rally

According to the BPF’s press-service, Aliaksandr Kuzniatsou, head of the party’s Vitsebsk City office, is going to be fired after he took part in the 27 July opposition rally in the town of Haradok, Vitsebsk region. Another BPF activist Siarhei Zviozdachkin was sacked for participating in the rally a few days ago.

Minsk authorities ban anti-crisis picket

18.08.2009 Minsk authorities ban anti-crisis picket

According to Radio Racyja, Minsk city authorities have banned an anti-crisis picket in downtown Minsk on 18 August. The picket was arranged by activists of the oppositional Belarusian Party of Communists, who were going to protest against the violations of the social rights of workers, as well as to demand a wage rise, advance of social benefits and prevention of mass job destruction. According to the party’s press secretary Siarhei Vazniak, the authorities banned the rally because they are afraid of the social campaign launched by the local oppositional Communists and members of the United Civil Party of Belarus.

Leanid Svetsik to appeal verdict by Vitsebsk Regional Court

18.08.2009 Leanid Svetsik to appeal verdict by Vitsebsk Regional Court

The Panel of Judges for Criminal Cases of the Supreme Court of Belarus is going to consider an appeal by Vitsebsk human rights activist Leanid Svetsik and his lawyer Pavel Sapelka against the verdict by Vitsebsk Regional Court on 15 September. The human rights activist was convicted of fomenting national and racial hatred and fined BYR 31,500,000 on 16 July 2009.

For Freedom activist fined

18.08.2009 For Freedom activist fined

According to the BelaPAN news agency quoting human rights activist Raman Kisliak, on 18 August Brest Leninski Court convicted For Freedom member Dzianis Turchaniak of disobedience of police order and fined him BYR 1,400,000. According to Mr.Kisliak, the activist was detained on 17 August in downtown Brest during an opposition flash-mob. Dzianis Turchaniak claims he was not taking part in the rally. However, he, together with a Young Front activist Mikhail Ilyin, was arrested and taken to the local police department to be charged with disobedience of orders and disorderly conduct, respectively. Mikhail Ilyin is still to stand trial on 25 August after he made a request for counsel.

Amnesty International launches new campaign against death penalty in Belarus

18.08.2009 Amnesty International launches new campaign against death penalty in Belarus

The Amnesty International human rights group has launched a new campaign for the abolition of the death penalty in Belarus. The group proposes to send letters to the head of Belarus, urging to replace the death penalty sentences to Vasil Yuzepchuk and Andrei Zhyk with imprisonment and to introduce a moratorium on the death penalty.

The Belapan news agency reminds that Vasil Yuzepchuk, 30, a resident of the Drahichyn district, in Jume 2009 was sentenced to capital punishment for killing several female pensioners. 25-year-old Zhuk from Salihorsk was sentenced to death for murdering two people who were carrying money to be paid as salaries.

Homel oppositionist fined for EU flag

18.08.2009 Homel oppositionist fined for EU flag

The administrative commission of the Savetski district of Homel fined activist of the “For Freedom” movement Zinaida Shumilina 175,000 rubles.

As Radio Svaboda reports, the members of the commission and its chairman, deputy head of the district administration Mikhail Shyshkou, decided that Zinaida Shumilina didn’t have the right to hang out a national white-red-white flag, a European flag, and a banner “Hunger Strike of Protest” in her private house.

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