BHC activist in Salihorsk appeals picket ban to Prosecutor’s Office
Leanid Markhotka, a representative of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee in Salihorsk, has filed a complaint with the Prosecutor’s Office to challenge a ban imposed by the district executive committee on a picket expected to be staged on Human Rights Day. The human rights defender also complains about the inadequate actions of an ideology official who classified a decision of the executive committee.
Banning the picket, the Salihorsk executive committee justified its decision by decision No. 700 “On measures to prevent accidents and rule of law during mass events”. The official website of the executive committee does not have this decision, and chief ideology official Mikalai Maskevich refused to provide a copy of this document.
The BHC activist says that the actions of authorities are illegal and the response from officials is unmotivated. Leanid Markhotka believes that the ban is irrelevant to the current legislation on mass events, as well as the law on citizens’ petitions.
The human rights activist urges the prosecutors to address these facts. In addition, Leanid Markhotka demands a response to the absence of the above-mentioned decision on the website of the executive committee and the refusal of officials of the Salihorsk district executive committee to provide a copy of this document. The BHC representative believes that this decision cannot fall under the law on state secrets and therefore the rejection of its publication and issuing copies upon request of citizens are illegal.