Draft law on alternative civilian service withdrawn from Parliament
The right to alternative civilian service is enshrined by the Constitution’s Article 57. It has been almost 20 years now, but the law on alternative civilian service still does not exist. The Constitutional Court twice pointed to this fact.
At the end of 2013, a bill on the issue was sent to Parliament, and the text was published on the website of the National Legal Internet Portal pravo.by.
Human rights defenders have repeatedly pointed out that the draft law was developed in "secret mode", under the heading "For Official Use Only."
On January 20, according to human rights defender Alena Tankachova, the bill was withdrawn from Parliament.
“As it turned out, in December, the bill was really introduced in Parliament by its developer, the Council of Ministers, published and immediately revoked by the Council of Ministers. The commission in charge of further work on the bill was to be the House of Representatives’s Commission on Labor and Social Affairs, and experts of the Commission confirmed that the bill never reached Parliament. The MPs had no time for meaningful work with it, as the bill came to the House of Representatives and was immediately revoked. They refused to give me an answer to a series of questions, namely: why the bill was withdrawn and for which further action was this done, offering to speak directly to the entity involved in withdrawing the bill. I contacted the staff of the Council of Ministers and the information I managed to receive suggests that the bill was really withdrawn and, as I was assured, it was revoked for technical reasons. According to employees of the Council of Ministers, in the near future, these causes will be eliminated, and the bill will be returned to Parliament for the next phase of its consideration,” says Mrs. Tankachova in her comments on the situation to “EuroBelarus”.