Homel: court upholds picket ban
On 12 January Siarhei Shytsikau, Judge of the
Tsentralny District Court of Homel, turned down the appeal of the Homel human
rights defenders Anatol Paplauny and Leanid Sudalenka against the refusal of
the Homel City Executive Committee to authorize their picket, dated to the Human
Rights Day, 10 December.
As stated by a representative of the executive committee, the action wasn’t authorized as the applicants failed to conclude service agreements with medics and police. Paplauny Sudalenka, in their turn, stated that such refusal violates their constitutional rights. In their lawsuit they asked the court to declare the ruling of the executive committee as unlawful and contradictory to Articles 19 and 21 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
They stated that they hadn’t concluded the agreements because the ruling of the executive committee that obliges organizers of mass events to conclude such agreements contradicts to the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus. “Such rulings destroy the essence of the law… For instance, people use the public transport, but they are not required to conclude service agreements for the protection of their security or cleaning of the transport after them,” commented Leanid Sudalenka.
Predictably enough, the judge ignored all arguments and took the side of the local authorities.