PACE invites Belarusian MPs to discuss death penalty

2013 2013-06-21T16:25:48+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en

The Committee on Political Affairs and Democracy of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe is expected to discuss the situation in Belarus at a meeting scheduled for June 27, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Belarus service reports. Among others, Andres Herkel (Estonia, EPP/CD), rapporteur on the situation in Belarus, will address the meeting.

According to the PACE official website, the event will include “exchanging views with the delegation of the House of Representatives.” Two of its members are said to have been invited to the meeting.

The press service of the House of Representatives told Radio Liberty that the delegation has not yet been defined.

According to Mr. Herkel, the meeting of the Political Committee will touch upon the issue of the death penalty in order “to assess what role can be played by the Belarusian Parliament in its resolution.”

Earlier, in a joint statement Marina Schuster (Germany, ALDE), the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly’s newly-appointed General Rapporteur on the abolition of the death penalty, and Andres Herkel condemned the imposition of a new death penalty in Belarus last week.

Belarus is the only country in Europe where the death penalty is still used. The European institutions have repeatedly called on the official Minsk to abandon the death penalty.

Marina Schuster notes that the Council of Europe will continue its dialogue with Belarus only after the country declares a moratorium on the death penalty.