HRHF concerned about conscription of civil and political activists in Belarus
The Human Rights House Foundation (HRHF) sent a letter to the Defense Minister of Belarus today, expressing its concerns about the conscription of civil and political activits in Belarus.
In the statement to the minister, the HRHF says it is especially concerned about fate of the youth activists Ivan Shyla and Franak Vyachorka. Both of them were conscripted regardless of the fact that they had been declared unfit for military service by the physical examination of doctors.
The HRHF states that the discriminatory treatment of youth activists is a breach of Article 26 of the 'International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights', adopted by the UN General Assembly on 16 December 1966. This treaty, which has been ratified by Belarus states that “all persons are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to the equal protection of the law. In this respect, the law shall prohibit any discrimination and guarantee to all persons equal and effective protection against discrimination on any ground such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status.”
Minister of Defense Colonel-General Leonid Maltsev is strongly urged to ensure that the Belarusian armed forces respect the conclusions of doctors regarding the health status of youth activists and abide by the legal requirements pertaining to the conscription of persons to the military service.