News for November 2009

Information campaign for abolition of death penalty to be carried out in Belarus, Lukashenka says

30.11.2009 Information campaign for abolition of death penalty to be carried out in Belarus, Lukashenka says

In his interview with the La Stampa Italian newspaper, President Lukashenka said an information campaign for the abolition of the death penalty in Belarus would be launched in the near future, the BELTA news agency reports.

Get Your University Statute campaign launched

30.11.2009 Get Your University Statute campaign launched

The activists of the Students’ Rada youth trade union group are going to make university administrations follow the statutes and promote awareness of students’ rights. The campaign entitled ‘Get Your University Statute!” has been launched at four major national universities, www.gazetaby.org reports.

30.11.2009 Human rights activist forcibly taken to mental hospital

Human rights activist and businessman Viktar Chabatarou has been forcibly taken to Navinki mental hospital by Kalinkavichy police. According to Mr. Chabatarou’s son, the activist was ‘arrested by road police while going to Minsk for an independent psychiatric examination’, initiated by Judge Mrs. Liudmila Savastsianava of Kalinkavichy District Court. None of his family members was informed of the detention.

Finkevich detained by policemen and KGB and taken to tax inspection

30.11.2009 Finkevich detained by policemen and KGB and taken to tax inspection

Tax inspection of Zavadski district of Minsk demands “Young Belarus” leader Artur Finkevich to account for the amount by which his expenditures exceed revenues.

As BelaPAN was informed by Finkevich, on November 27 at about 2.30 p.m. he was detained in Ubarevich Street by KGB officers and police. “I left the house, and chekists (KGB servicemen) flew at me from every side.

30.11.2009 “European Belarus” activist kidnapped and taken out of town

Uladzimir Lemesh was caught in the center of Minsk on November 27, forced to get into a car without license plates and taken out of town.

The oppositionist was detained by two militiamen ahead of a street action in honour of an anniversary of the Slutsk Uprising near the editor’s office of “Vyacherni Minsk” in Independence Avenue and ordered to show his ID.

Belarusian Popular Front activist beaten dead by iron bars by unknown

27.11.2009 Belarusian Popular Front activist beaten dead by iron bars by unknown

On November 26 in the hospital in Maryina Horka a democratic activist Valyantsin Dounar died.

As “Nasha Niva” was informed by Ales Vaskovich, a fellow party member of perished, on November 20 at about 10 p.m. unknown attacked Valyantsin Dounar in the street and started beating him on the head with iron rods. Later 49-year-old activist was taken to intensive care, but health professionals failed to rescue him.

Liudmila Asipenka: ‘Let us hope the charges brought against my father are a mistake’

26.11.2009 Liudmila Asipenka: ‘Let us hope the charges brought against my father are a mistake’

As we have reported before, on 25 November the Vaukavysk businessman and political prisoner Uladzimer Asipenka, was charged with terrorist act preparation. The case will be filed to one of the country’s prosecutor’s offices, after the accused and his legal advisors study the materials of the case.

26.11.2009 Brest prosecutor’s office to close down local independent trade union

Brest city authorities, together with Brest city prosecutor’s office, are going to close down the local office of the Free Belarusian Trade Union at Brest State University, Euroradio reports, quoting the trade union’s leader Valiantsin Lazarenkau. According to Mr. Lazarenkau, he has been summoned to the local prosecutor’s office and ordered to provide a list of the organization’s members. Since 2005, over 30 members of the trade union have been forced to leave their jobs after their working contracts had been cancelled.

Independent trade union activists arrested at BelAZ

25.11.2009 Independent trade union activists arrested at BelAZ

On 24 November several members of the independent trade union of radio-electronic industry were detained at the entrance to the BelAZ truck factory in Zhodzina, Minsk region, as they were distributing leaflets in support of their co-activist Yury Loban, fired by the factory administration on 24 November. According to the information available, the activists were taken to the local police department.

Smarhon resident submits complaint to UN Human Rights Committee

25.11.2009 Smarhon resident submits complaint to UN Human Rights Committee

Viktar Kavaleuski from the town of Smarhon, Hrodna region, has submitted an individual complaint to the UN Human Rights Committee, claiming that he was illegally forced to pay membership fee to an organization, while he was not its member, www.smargonbel.byhost.org reports.

Uladzimer Asipenka charged with terrorist act preparation

25.11.2009 Uladzimer Asipenka charged with terrorist act preparation

According to human rights activist Aleh Vouchak, Vaukavysk businessman Uladzimer Asipenka has been charged with the preparation of an act of terrorism, following similar charges brought against Mikalai Autukhovich a few days earlier.

Aleh Hulak: ‘The death penalty is a humiliation of people, the right, the present’

25.11.2009 Aleh Hulak: ‘The death penalty is a humiliation of people, the right, the present’

Aleh Hulak, head of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee, has joined the campaign against the death penalty in Belarus. ‘I believe that Belarus must abolish the death penalty. It is savage to allow the state to murder a human being in the XXI century.

Journalist Shchapiotkina warned by Prosecutor’s Office

25.11.2009 Journalist Shchapiotkina warned by Prosecutor’s Office

Mrs. Tamara Shchapiotkina, independent journalist from the town of Biaroza, Brest region, has received an official warning by Brest Regional Prosecutor’s Office for interviewing on behalf of Radio Racyja. The journalist says the warning is groundless. However, Mrs. Shchapiotkina was told she might be prosecuted in case another warning was issued in future.

Political prisoner Artsyom Dubski denied release on parole

25.11.2009 Political prisoner Artsyom Dubski denied release on parole

The arrested participant of the Process of 14 is still in cruel prison conditions and went on three-day hungry strike protesting against arbitrary behaviour of the colony administration.

On November 24, lawyer Tamara Sidarenka visited her client, the arrested participant of the Process of 14 Artsyom Dubski, who has been in Mahilou penal colony #19 since July 2009.

Prosecutor General turns down Viasna's complaint

24.11.2009 Prosecutor General turns down Viasna's complaint

The Human Rights Center Viasna has recieved another reply to its complaint lodged with the Office of Prosecutor's General of Belarus concerning the forthcoming execution of the death sentences to Vasil Yuzepchuk and Andrei Zhuk. In an official reply, representative of the Prosecutor's Office Mrs. Haurylenka says that 'only the convict, his legal advisor, the victim, public defendant or their representatives can appeal the verdict... Since the applicants are not participants of the criminal process, the complaint is left unattended.'

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