Hrodna City Executive Committee issues a “cynic” picket ban
Hrodna City Executive
Committee once again prohibited the human rights defenders Uladzimir
Khilmanovich, Raman Yurhel and Viktar Sazonau to hold an
informational picket. The activists intended to hold a picket against
the death penalty on 10 October, the World Day against the Death
Penalty, and inform the citizens about this issue.
This time the authorities met the legal terms of answering the application – they sent their answer on the last day of the legal term for answering, 5 October. At the same time, the justification for the refusal to hold the picket is just absurd. In their official letter, signed by the deputy head of the Hrodna City Executive Committee Alena Ahei, the officials of the Hrodna City Executive Committee tell the applicants: “In your appeal you were to have written whether the even would be held with the use of pyrotechnic products and open fire ...". Another reason for the ban is that on the basis of the responses from the Leninski District Police Department of Hrodna, the Hrodna City Housing Service and the Hrodna city ambulance station the executive committee concluded that the applicants were unable to implement the legal requirements. However, the legal basis of this assertion remains unclear.
One of the applicants, Uladzimir Khilmanovich, commented on the situation: “This time the ban was formulated with great cynicism, the executive committee again violates our constitutional rights as citizens of the Republic of Belarus. The other, of course, couldn't be expected. At a recent trial, where our appeal against a similar ban was considered, the judge and the prosecutor ignored evident violations of the law by the executive authorities. The officials continue discriminating citizens and taking such politically motivated, i.e. unlawful decisions.”