“Legal Assistance to Population” Continues Its Work
Statement of the public association “Legal Assistance to Population”
On 8 September 2003, violating Article No. 271 of the Civic Process Code of Belarus, Judge N. Zhupikava conducted the closed consideration of the suit of the justice board of Minsk City Executive Committee for liquidation of the public association “Legal Assistance to Population”.
This is the first precedent when human rights organization is liquidated for juridical support to citizens with low income. It was the first such trial to be conducted in absence of the defendant’s representatives.
The court entrance was overlapped by the policemen who said they were letting people in according to the list that was composed by Judge. The defendant’s witnesses, representatives of public and international organizations, workers of diplomatic missions, journalists and ordinary citizens weren’t included there.
Violatting Articles No. 17, 267 and 269 of the Civic Process Code of Belarus that guarantee the publicity and objectivity of the trial, Judge Zhupikava held a close court sitting and took at it an illegal decision. It is not the first case when Judge Zhupikava makes decisions on order. She had also made it in the case on refusal to satisfy the suit of Volha Zakharanka, wife of the former minister of internal affairs of Belarus Yury Zakharanka to recognize her husband dead, in the case about the compensation of the moral harm to the parents whose children perished in the underground pedestrian crossing of “Niamiha” tube station.
The public association “Legal Assistance to Population” is going to complain against his decision to the Board of civic cases at the Supreme Court of Belarus.
Understanding that the court system of our country does not guarantee justice in decision of this case,
We state that we won’t stop our activity on defending citizens and giving them juridical education. We will continue the monitoring of human rights violations by the Government of Belarus, courts, prosecutor’s offices and the police. We will use all our knowledge, forces and possibilities to restore justice in our society and building of the democratic constitutional State in the Republic of Belarus.