News for September 2010
30.09.2010 Radio Racyja journalist summoned to KGB
Zmitser Kisel, journalist of the Poland-based Radio Racyja, has been summoned to the KGB Brest department to reportedly ‘clear up the troubles associated with him’, Radio Racya reports.
30.09.2010 Formation of Biaroza district election commission lacks transparency, say local activists
Biaroza activists Tamara Shchapiotkina and Siarzhuk Rusetski, who earlier were not invited to the joint meeting of Biaroza district executive committee and the presidium of Biaroza district council of deputies for the formation of district election commission, have lodged a complaint with the Central Election Commission.
30.09.2010 The death penalty is used in isolated cases, says Supreme Court
‘The death penalty and life sentence are exceptional measures of punishment and are used in isolated cases,’ said deputy chair of the Supreme Court Valery Kalinkovich in an interview with the press.
30.09.2010 Poltask: no democrats on town election commission
Mikalai Sharstsiuk, representative of the Belarusian party of the Left ‘Just World’, was not elected member of Polatsk town election commission. His nomination was dismissed since it did not specify which local office of the party nominated the activist.
29.09.2010 Orsha authorities publish two versions of canvassing restrictions
Orsha town executive committee released its decision #1371, imposing a ban on maintaining canvassing activities in a number of public places across the town. The decision was posted on the committee’s official web-site and later published in Orsha major state-run newspaper ‘Arshanskaya hazeta’.
29.09.2010 Minsk authorities issue backdated restrictions on canvassing locations
Minsk city authorities have published their decision on the public places banned for canvassing for signatures. The ban covers three of the city’s main squares: Independence square, Victory square and Kastrychnitskaya square. Canvassing is not allowed within 50 meters of the governmental buildings, embassies, prosecutor’s offices and courts, as well as the organizations, which ‘maintain the defense capability, state security and life-sustaining services (public transport, water and energy supply facilities, hospitals and schools).
29.09.2010 Social Democrats Haradok activist denied membership on election commission over ‘brawler’s reputation’
Leanid Haravy, Haradok member of the Belarusian Social Democratic Party ‘Hramada’, has lodged a complaint against local authorities’ decision to dismiss his nomination for the town’s election commission.
29.09.2010 Election commissions formation: secret procedures and no democrats
A number of towns’ authorities across the country have held secret meetings to form local election commissions.
29.09.2010 Public places banned for canvassing for signatures: country-wide analysis
The local executive bodies have identified the list of public places banned for collecting signatures by presidential hopefuls’ initiative groups. The information provided by observers from various regions shows that most populated areas are not among the authorized canvassing locations.
29.09.2010 The 2010 Election of the President of Belarus: Weekly Analytical Review (20-26 September)
Lydia Ermoshina, Chair of the CEC, said that she believed in Alexander Lukashenko's victory in the forthcoming election. This was proclaimed even before the documents on registration of the initiative group of the incumbent president were submitted to the CEC. The statement by the CEC Chair is against the principles of non-engagement and fairness, which should be the guide for the electoral administration.
28.09.2010 UCP Barysau office to appeal decision by local authorities
The United Civil Party’s Barysau office has lodged a complaint with Barysau district court against a decision by local executive authorities to deny UCP member Rehina Viltouskaya membership on the town election commission.
28.09.2010 Zhodzina activist detained
On 27 September, Zhodzina police detained local youth activist Andrei Zubr. He was taken to the nearest police station and released three hours later. The police seized 216 copies of the ‘Tut i tsiaper’ newspaper.
28.09.2010 Maladechna authorities hold secret meeting to form election commissions
Maladechna human rights activists Eduard Balanchuk and Ales Kaputski were not invited to attend the meeting for the formation of local election commissions, despite an official application by the Belarusian Helsinki Committee.
28.09.2010 Information on pre-election meeting arrives too late for Biaroza activists
On 28 September, 2 p.m. Biaroza pro-democratic activists Tamara Shchapiotkina and Siarzhuk Rusetski received a letter from local executive authorities, saying that the time and place of meeting for the formation of election commissions could be found at the town’s official web-site. However, the meeting had been held a few hours before, at 8.30 a.m.
28.09.2010 Observers’ presence at meetings illegal, say Babruisk officials
Belarusian Helsinki Committee Babruisk observers were not allowed to attend the meetings of local authorities, where election commissions were formed, despite official applications submitted to the town executive committee.