Authorities plotting legal basis for political repressions against civil activists, says Assembly of Belarusian Pro-Dem NGOs
On 15 September, the Assembly of Belarusian Pro-Democratic NGOs issued a special statement, predicting a new wave of political repressions against the country’s civil society ahead of the forthcoming presidential election.
‘Ahead of the presidential election, the country’s civil society is subject to a new wave of pressure by the authorities. One of the gravest means of the pressure is judicial liquidation of non-governmental organizations,’ says the statement.
‘We are sorry to state that the Belarusian authorities are returning to the practice of liquidation of non-profit organizations. Over the past few months, the authorities have launched a campaign of liquidation of NGOs, registered under the declarative procedures, e.g. Belrada association (already dissolved); two more NGOs – ‘Rukh Naperad’ and ‘Pravy Alians’ – are currently awaiting liquidation.’
‘At the same time, the justice departments of Minsk and other cities have suspended registration of such forms of NGOs as institutions and associations. We believe the practice of judicial liquidations is indicative of the authorities plan to create legal basis for political repressions against civil activists during the election campaign.’
‘We call upon the authorities not to make any steps aimed at delegalization of civil society structures. Bearing in mind that the Belarusian legislation provides for a moratorium on judicial liquidation of political parties during election campaigns, we suggest applying the same procedure to the cases pertaining to other forms of non-profit organizations.’