Homel Regional Court orders district court to consider complaint by local activist
The Civil Division of the Homel Regional Court considered yesterday an appeal filed by a civil society activist from the town of Kalinkavichy, Tamara Zaitsava.
As a result, the Regional Court ruled to reverse the verdict of the court of Kalinkavichy district, which refused to hear the activist’s complaint against a ban imposed by local officials on a peaceful assembly. The case was sent to Kalinkavichy for a new trial by another judge. Previously, the district court dismissed Tamara Zaitsava’s complaint, saying that first she had to appeal the ban to the regional executive committee.
The activist has been providing assistance to victims of recruiters for work in Russia. Tamara Zaitsava’s son, in her opinion, was also a victim of such illegal entrepreneurs. After repeated appeals to the police were left unanswered, the activist, along with other victims, decided to stage a rally to attract the public's attention to the problem.
Mrs. Zaitsava was defended in court by human rights defender Leanid Sudalenka, who said that “the district judge, unlike her Homel colleagues, have not yet studied the law on mass events. Because it is possible to appeal against the decision of the executive committees directly in court, instead of applying to the executive committee, as advised to Tamara Zaitsava by the district court. In Homel, we got the judges to study the law, but in the regions, this work is just beginning. We'll have to apply for peaceful assemblies in all districts of Homel region in order to hold a legal literacy campaign for district judges.”