Human rights defenders urge Minister of Internal Affairs to monitor threats to Leanid Sudalenka
A number of Belarusian human rights defenders have sent an appeal to the Minister of the Interior urging him to take charge of the investigation into a case of repeated threats against human rights activist in Homel Leanid Sudalenka.
Earlier, Leanid Sudalenka asked to open a criminal investigation, but the department of internal affairs of the Homel Regional Executive Committee refused to open a case. It was only after appealing the refusal and reversing the decision that the authorities launched a probe.
In their petition, human rights activists stress the fact that the threat to their colleague could be regarded as a threat to the entire human rights community in Belarus, including human rights defenders who publicly express their criticism and their attitude to the problems of social and political life of the country, as well as on the death penalty.
“We ask you to take control of the case and do everything possible for the proper performance of duties by police officers,” the appeal says.
The letter was signed by Ales Bialiatski, Valiantsin Stefanovich, Uladzimir Labkovich, Tatsiana Reviaka, Andrei Paluda, Aleh Hulak, Hary Pahanyaila, Pavel Levinau, Alena Tankachova, Tatsiana Hatsura-Yavorskaya, Dzmitry Salauyou, Raisa Mikhailouskaya, Dzina Shautsova, Aleh Aheyeu, Inna Kulei, Raman Yurhel, Siarhei Ustsinau, Halina Ustisnau, Aleh Volchak.
Leanid Sudalenka sent to the Homel City Prosecutor a complaint against a decision of the Chyhunachny district police department to refuse to open a criminal investigation into the death threats against his family. He asked to identify the IP-address of those who threatened him over the Internet and to institute criminal proceedings under Article 186 of the Criminal Code ("death threats").
The incident was criticized by Front Line Defenders, who said that was deeply concerned about the physical and psychological safety and integrity of Leanid Sudalenka and his children.