Forum of Human Rights Defenders
On 23-24 January 2004 the Forum of human rights defenders, organized by the International Federation for Human Rights took place in Minsk.
More than 150 Belarusian human rights activists, representatives of international and foreign human rights organizations and international structures that deal with human rights issues took part in it.
Beside Belarusian reporters, the situation with the human rights was described by representatives of the largest human rights organizations, such as International Federation for Human Rights, International League of Human Rights, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.
Activists of human rights organizations of Czech, Russia, Sweden, Poland, Lithuania, the Ukraine and Moldova attended the Forum.
International European bodies were represented by the reports of the PACE Director General on human rights, Directorate General for External Relations of the European Commission of the EU, the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights. The head of OSCE mission in Minsk, Ambassador Eberhard Heiken presented a short speech there.
The well-known Russian human rights activist Sergey Kovalyov participated in the Forum as well. The main practical activities there were conducted in the six groups, where the issues of the national mechanisms for protection of rights and liberties, constitutional guarantees and the mechanisms for realization of electoral rights, forcible disappearances, the activity of mass media and the issues of linguistic rights were discussed.
The Forum adopted a Resolution and elaborated the recommendations to Belarusian human rights activists, representatives of the international community and Belarusian authorities.
Information Department of HRC “Viasna”