News for March 2017
31.03.2017 Expert analysis of the prosecution of Viachaslau Kasinerau
On March 28, it was reported that activist Viachaslau Kasinerau, who was serving a 15-day administrative detention for participation in a demonstration on February 17 in Minsk, was charged with an offense under Part 1, Art. 339 of the Criminal Code (hooliganism). The activist was taken into custody and transferred to the Interior Ministry’s pre-trial prison in Minsk.
30.03.2017 Human rights defender Andrei Bandarenka acquitted, released
The imprisoned human rights defender Andrei Bandarenka will be released tomorrow, after the Lieninski District Court of Mahilioŭ found him today not guilty of violating prison rules. If convicted, Bandarenka could have faced another year in prison, as requested by the prosecutor earlier today.
30.03.2017 UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of peaceful assembly notified of detention of observers in Belarus
The Belarusian Helsinki Committee and the Human Rights Center "Viasna" have sent to Maina Kiai, UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of peaceful assembly and freedom of association, a joint message, which provided information about the detention of observers, human rights activists and journalists in Viasna’s office during a coordination meeting ahead of the Freedom Day demonstration on March 25.
29.03.2017 Observatory: Crackdown continues, more human rights defenders detained in Belarus
Paris-Geneva, March 29, 2017: Belarusian authorities continue to use detention to prevent human rights defenders from observing peaceful protests throughout the country. The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders (FIDH-OMCT) deplores a new series of arrests, harassments and convictions and urges Belarusian authorities to release all detained human rights defenders and investigate allegations of ill-treatment.
29.03.2017 Statement of the Coordinating Committee of the Belarusian National Platform of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum
In connection with the events of March 25-26, 2017 in Minsk and other Belarusian cities
29.03.2017 Front Line Defenders: Human rights defender Pavel Levinov detained and in critical health condition
On 26 March 2017, human rights defender Pavel Levinov was arrested by police from the Oktyabrsky District in Vitebsk city on the charge of participating in an unauthorised peaceful assembly. He was initially kept in a temporary detention centre. Later that day, he was hospitalised after suffering a hypertensive crisis.
29.03.2017 ENEMO Condemns Crackdown on its Member Organizations in Belarus
The European Network of Election Monitoring Organizations (ENEMO) is deeply alarmed by the crackdown on civil society and human rights defenders in Belarus in connection to the Freedom Day demonstrations.
29.03.2017 Former political prisoner Viachaslau Kasinerau faces new criminal charges
Former political prisoner Viachaslau Kasinerau has been charged under Part 1 of Article 339 of the Criminal Code (hooliganism). The case was initiated by the Investigative Committee.
29.03.2017 Belarus: UN Expert Decries Return Of Mass Violence Against Peaceful Protestors, Demands Release Of All Detained
The Special Rapporteur on human rights in Belarus, Miklós Haraszti, has expressed dismay over the Government’s open return to the policy of violent mass repression against peaceful demonstrators, non-governmental organizations, journalists and political opponents, and is calling on the authorities of Belarus to stop harassment and violence.
28.03.2017 Statistics of Freedom Day trials
On March 27, Minsk and the six regional cities of Belarus hosted trials of persons detained in the lead up to and during the protests of March 25-26. Human rights activists and observers monitored the trials.
28.03.2017 Germany's Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel on the demonstrations in Belarus
Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel issued the following statement today (28 March) on the demonstrations in Belarus
28.03.2017 EU Statement on a death sentence in Belarus
The Delegation of the European Union to Belarus has issued the following statement in agreement with the EU Heads of Mission in Belarus.
28.03.2017 Civic solidarity movement condemns mass detentions and police violence in Belarus
We, the undersigned members of the Civic Solidarity Platform (CSP), a coalition of human rights NGOs from Europe, the former Soviet Union region and North America, and other non-governmental organisations decry the mass detentions of peaceful demonstrators, journalists and human rights defenders, as well as the use of violence and abusive treatment targeting them in Belarus on 25-26 March 2017.
28.03.2017 Foreign Office statement on demonstrations in Belarus
Government of Belarus urged to respect right to peaceful protest
28.03.2017 EPDE calls on Belarusian authorities to release the peaceful protesters
On Saturday 25 March the Minsk office of the Belarusian EPDE-member organisation Human Rights Center Viasna was raided by the police. 57 human rights defenders, among them the Chairman of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee, Aleh Hulak, also a member of EPDE, were detained. The lawyer of the HRC Viasna was hospitalized after he was beaten by the police.