Complaints of Henadz Loika on the discriminatory decision of the Tsentralny district court of Minsk not satisfied
Civil chamber of Minsk city court, having considered on 12 June the appeal on decision of Central district court of Minsk on Henadz Loika’s case, did not satisfy it. Belarusian artist and civic activist Loika challenged actions of "Belinvestbank" and KGB in court: he claimed that his constitutional right to use his native language in concluding contracts and filling other banking documents.
Civil chamber of Minsk city court did not find any procedural violations in the decision of the Tsentralny district court of Minsk dated 11 April on Henadz Loika’s case.
Judge of Tsentralny district court of Minsk Alena Siamak rejected the lawsuit of the Belarusian artist and civic activist Henadz Loika against "Belinvestbank", ignoring the arguments of the applicant and his public representative Valiantsin Stefanovich about discriminatory approach of the bank to the Belarusian language. The substance of Henadz Loika’s claim was that in 2012, he was seeking opportunities to be served in "Belinvestbank” in Belarusian. The bank did not satisfy his wish making reference to "technical reasons", and bank management considered relevant technical adjustments "unreasonable" due to their high costs.
The court rejected the appeal citing Art. 17 of the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus in accordance with which the country's state languages are both Belarusian and Russian.
Deputy Chairman of the Human Rights Center "Viasna" Valiantsin Stefanovich notes that "Tsentralny district court of Minsk ”actually deprived Henadz Loika of participation in the process by refusing to provide him with an interpreter, and that is why the Civil chamber of Minsk city court had to recall a judgment. Today's process clearly showed that equal status of Belarusian and Russian languages guaranteed by the Constitution of Belarus is nothing but an empty declaration. In fact, we have one state language, and this language is Russian."