Freedom Day rallies banned in Baranavichy and Hrodna
On 20 March Baranavichy civil activist Ryhor Hryk received an official reply from the city executive committee imposing a ban on staging a picket commemorating the 94th anniversary of the proclamation of the independence of the Belarusian People’s Republic (Freedom Day) on 25 March.
The ban says Mr. Hryk violated Article 5 of the Mass Events Code. However, the officials failed to specify which provision of the law was broken by the activist.
This is a fourth ban on opposition events issued by Baranavichy city authorities in 2012.
Similar ban was issued by the executive authorities of Hrodna, who cited Par. 4 Art. 5 of the Mass Events Code as the key ground for the decision.
“Hrodna authorities have for a long time showed their negative attitude towards the Belarusian national values, including the major historic events. As for the essence of the ban, it is made with the use of the principle “prohibited because prohibited”, says local human rights defender Uladzimir Khilmanovich.