UN establishes violation of electoral rights of Leanid Sudalenka
As it became known today, the UN Committee on Human Rights adopted a decision on the complaint of a resident of Homieĺ, Leanid Sudalenka relating to the 2007 local elections.
International experts found violations of his rights as the candidate for the regional council of deputies to be elected at genuine elections, guaranteeing the free expression of the will of voters.
The decision of the UN Committee also indicated violation of the right of ex-candidate for the holding of meetings with voters (the right to peaceful assembly). According to this decision, the Government must provide Leanid Sudalenka with effective remedy and compensation. The state is also obliged to take measures to prevent similar violations in the future and reconsider the regulation on holding mass events in Homieĺ.
According to Leanid Sudalenka, during the 2007 elections his team has documented serious violations of electoral legislation. In particular, his proxies weren't included to the electoral commissions, and numerous manipulations of the turnout were registered during the voting.
"I tried to prove the manipulations with the turnout at court, but to no avail. The authorities opposed to us observers from the Council of Veterans and the Belarusian Republication Youth Union, whose numbers corresponded to the official ones. Moreover, the regional newspaper “Homieĺskaja Praŭda” refused to publish my electoral program and appeal to voters. When I appealed for holding an electoral meeting, the authorities sent me and the electors to the remote place on the outskirts, designated for mass events,” remembers Mr. Sudalenka.
He stressed that in the course of communication on the complaint, the Government of Belarus had to amend the legislation which had lead to violation of his right to meet with the electorate. At present, the conduct of such meetings is regulated not by the Law “On Mass Events”, but by the Electoral Code, according to which candidates have the right to conduct electoral meetings in any convenient form.