News for March 2017

150 persons convicted today

27.03.2017 150 persons convicted today

Up to 150 persons have been convicted today on charges of involvement in the protests staged in various parts of Belarus on March 25 and 26. These include human rights defenders and journalists.

FIDH and OMCT: HRC “Viasna” office unlawfully raided, dozens arrested

27.03.2017 FIDH and OMCT: HRC “Viasna” office unlawfully raided, dozens arrested

"At least 57 persons involved in the monitoring of ongoing peaceful protests, including foreign nationals from France, Germany, Ukraine and Russia, were arrested today at the office of Human Rights Centre “Viasna” in Minsk. The arrest took place ahead of peaceful protests to be held on March 25, 2017. Arrests of protesters, journalists and monitors are reportedly on-going," FIDH said on Saturday.

Rigoni calls for immediate release of detained Belarusian activists

27.03.2017 Rigoni calls for immediate release of detained Belarusian activists

Andrea Rigoni (ALDE, Italy), following his fact-finding visit to Minsk on 23-24 March 2017, called on the Belarusian authorities to stay focused on their path of dialogue with the Parliamentary Assembly and to immediately release all those who have been detained in connection with the March demonstrations and the annual 'Freedom Day' commemoration on 25th March.

Report on monitoring a protest in Kastryčnickaja Square in Minsk. 26 March 2017

27.03.2017 Report on monitoring a protest in Kastryčnickaja Square in Minsk. 26 March 2017

On 26 March 2017, a group of people gathered in Minsk's central square to protest against violent mass detentions during the peaceful assembly in Minsk the previous day.

Mikalai Statkevich released after 3 days in KGB prison

27.03.2017 Mikalai Statkevich released after 3 days in KGB prison

Opposition leader Mikalai Statkevich has been released from the KGB prison in Minsk.

OSCE/ODIHR Director Link condemns undue restrictions on demonstrations and unnecessary use of force against peaceful protesters in Belarus

26.03.2017 OSCE/ODIHR Director Link condemns undue restrictions on demonstrations and unnecessary use of force against peaceful protesters in Belarus

WARSAW, 26 March 2017 - Michael Georg Link, Director of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, today condemned the reported undue restrictions on public assemblies and the unnecessary use of force by Belarusian authorities against peaceful protestors in Minsk and other cities in the country.

More detentions across Belarus

26.03.2017 More detentions across Belarus

The police detained today around a dozen demonstrators in Minsk's Kastryčnickaja Square, as they protested against yesterday's violent dispersal of a peaceful assembly in the city center that was attended by thousands of people.

Belarus: Vicious crackdown on peaceful protests mars ‘Freedom Day’

26.03.2017 Belarus: Vicious crackdown on peaceful protests mars ‘Freedom Day’

Belarusian authorities must immediately and unconditionally release all those arrested before and during peaceful protests and end their vicious crackdown against demonstrators, Amnesty International said after dozens of ‘Freedom Day’ demonstrators were violently arrested and human rights observers detained.

Statement of the United States Embassy in Minsk on the Prevention of Freedom Day Demonstrations

26.03.2017 Statement of the United States Embassy in Minsk on the Prevention of Freedom Day Demonstrations

The United States notes with deep concern that authorities in Belarus failed to allow peaceful demonstrations in Minsk for the annual “Freedom Day” commemoration.

Report on monitoring the Freedom Day demonstration in Minsk. 25 March 2017

26.03.2017 Report on monitoring the Freedom Day demonstration in Minsk. 25 March 2017

A traditional march to commemorate the founding of the Belarusian National Republic was conducted in Minsk on March 25 (Freedom Day).

Use of force against peaceful protesters cannot be justified, EU said

25.03.2017 Use of force against peaceful protesters cannot be justified, EU said

Statement by the Spokesperson on the events in the run up to and during today's Freedom Day in Belarus

Hundreds detained in Minsk protest

25.03.2017 Hundreds detained in Minsk protest

Several hundred people have been detained during a protest in central Minsk today. These include dozens of domestic and foreign journalists.

Viasna office raided by police. 57 people briefly detained

25.03.2017 Viasna office raided by police. 57 people briefly detained

The Minsk-based office of the Human Rights Center "Viasna" was raided by the police at around 1 pm today. 57 persons were detained, but soon released.

Stop whipping up hysteria and atmosphere of fear in the Belarusian society and ensure respect for human rights

24.03.2017 Stop whipping up hysteria and atmosphere of fear in the Belarusian society and ensure respect for human rights

A joint statement by the Belarusian human rights community. 24 March 2017, Minsk

Polish MPs urge Belarus to halt repression and start dialogue with civil society

23.03.2017 Polish MPs urge Belarus to halt repression and start dialogue with civil society

On March 23, the Sejm of the Republic of Poland hosted parliamentary hearings with representatives of political parties and civil society of Belarus. Participants included, in particular, chairman of the Belarusian Association of Journalists Andrei Bastunets and Chairman of the Human Rights Center "Viasna" Ales Bialiatski.

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