News for March 2011

31.03.2011 Mikita Likhavid goes on hunger strike

Mikita Likhavid informed his mother Alena Likhavid about the hunger-strike at a meeting in the morning on March 31 in Valadarski Street detention center.

Lida blogger faces libel charges for social network parody

31.03.2011 Lida blogger faces libel charges for social network parody

Lida blogger and former employee of Hrodna government-owned newspaper Yauhen Kutsko is reportedly suspected of folk-leasing for a publication in the www.vkontake.ru social network, mocking the local state-run newspaper “Lidskaya gazeta”.

Le Monde: Lukashenka must be stopped now, otherwise he to become new Gaddafi

31.03.2011 Le Monde: Lukashenka must be stopped now, otherwise he to become new Gaddafi

Wile the attention of the West is locked on revolutions in Arab world, the dictatorship in Belarus is speeding up the flywheel of repressions.

On March 24 the founder and chairman of Vyasna human rights centre Ales Byalyatski visited Paris. He urged the French Foreign Ministry to impose economic sanctions against the Belarusian regime, Le Monde writes.

International Herald Tribune: Soviet- era echoes in punishment for Belarus family

31.03.2011 International Herald Tribune: Soviet- era echoes in punishment for Belarus family

Andrei Vilkin has long been celebrated in Belarus for his skills as a karate master and a coach. The patriarch of a family of decorated martial artists, he has filled his living room with the hallmarks of his success: trophies from world championships and national awards for ‘‘ service to the motherland.’’ But they are of little help to him now.

31.03.2011 Uladzimir Nyaklyaeu's interrogation in KGB lasted for 5 hours

Another interrogation is appointed on March 31.

31.03.2011 OSCE office in Minsk is closed

Head of the office, German diplomat Benedict Haller, leaves Belarus today.

31.03.2011 STATEMENT THE BELARUSIAN ASSOCIATION OF JOURNALISTS ON THE SCORE OF TIGHTENING OF PRESSURE ON JOURNALISTS AT THE END OF MARCH 2011

Situation with freedom of journalistic activity in Belarus has deteriorated dramatically since recently. The BAJ members from Mahilou – Uladzimir Laptsevich, Ales Asiptsou, and Dzmitry Salauyou – were detained and sentenced to 3 – 7 days of arrest under administrative law on the eve of the Freedom Day, celebrated on March 25th. A TV cameraman Uladzislau Staravierau was detained for several hours in the city of Vitsiebsk. All the media workers, mentioned above, were detained upon far-fetched pretexts. Once again, the police and the plain-clothes men prevented journalists from reporting on street actions on March 25, 2011.

Another accused in mass riot case

31.03.2011 Another accused in mass riot case

Another person – Yauhen Sakret – has been reportedly charged under Art. 293 of the Criminal Code (mass riot).

Ales Bialiatski appeals warning in court

30.03.2011 Ales Bialiatski appeals warning in court

Leader of the Human Rights Center “Viasna” Ales Bialiatski has lodged a complaint with Minsk Tsentralny District Court, appealing a warning issued to the human rights defender by the General Prosecutor’s Office on 16 February.

Several participants of 19 December 2010 events face milder charges

30.03.2011 Several participants of 19 December 2010 events face milder charges

The preliminary investigative department of Minsk City Department of Internal Affairs has brought new charges against Uladzimir Niakliayeu, Aliaksandr Fiaduta, Siarhei Vazniak, Andrei Dzmitryeu, Vital Rymasheuski and Nasta Palazhanka.

European Criminal Bar Association condemns disbarment of Belarusian lawyers

30.03.2011 European Criminal Bar Association condemns disbarment of Belarusian lawyers

The European Criminal Bar Association (ECBA) was informed by the Human Right Committee of the Polish Bar and other sources of attempts by the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Belarus to initiate and endorse restrictions and disbarment against several lawyers who have undertaken the defence of persons suspected or accused of participating in the events that took place in Minsk on 19–20 December 2010.

Analytical review of the trial of Mikita Likhavid

30.03.2011 Analytical review of the trial of Mikita Likhavid

The Human Rights Center “Viasna” believes that: 1. The verdict pronounced by Minsk Partyzanski District Court, sentencing Mikita Likhavid to 3.5 years of imprisonment in a high-security penal colony, is illegal and politically motivated. 2. Mikita Likhavid should be considered a prisoner of conscience and therefore the Human Rights Center “Viasna” demands his acquittal and immediate release.

Belarus urged to release election protesters after student convicted

30.03.2011 Belarus urged to release election protesters after student convicted

Amnesty International has demanded the release of a Belarusian student sentenced today for taking part in a post-election protest - the third similar conviction in the past week.

29.03.2011 UCP activist detained

Aliaksandr Zhukau, activist of the United Civic Party of Belarus, has been reportedly detained and taken to Minsk office of Organized Crime Department, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reports.

29.03.2011 Court upholds closure of Avtoradio

Judge Dzmitry Alyaksandraw rejected an appeal by Avtoradio against its closure at a rehearing of the popular FM station’s case that wrapped up at the Supreme Economic Court of Belarus on Tuesday.

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