Vitsebsk: Public Association Private Initiatives Is Liquidated
On 18 April Vitsebsk Regional Court suspended the activity of the public association Private Initiatives. According to the information of the press service of the NGO Assembly, the public association has been liquidated by a suit of the juridical department of Vitsebsk Regional Executive Committee. The method of the liquidation of NGOs is developed: first they are deprived of premises, which causes legal address loss, which is viewed by officials as ‘systematic violation of the statute’.
In this case the same thing has happened. The house management of Pershamaiski borough of Vitsebsk refused to extend a rental contract which ended in summer of 2005. The head of the NGO Siarhei Shelehau told to the court that he tried to reach compromise with city authorities on the problem of legal address, In particular, he addressed the city executive committee two times to change the situation. However local authorities haven’t allowed Private Initiatives to rent the premises again.
The attempts to find new headquarters for Private Initiatives were unsuccessful. ‘We were either denied premises, or offered too high costs of rent,’ Siarhei Shelehau said. As a result, one of the oldest democratic organizations of Vitsebsk is deprived of legal status. Besides, the NGO is to pay legal costs of 150 000 Belarusian rubles.