Baranavičy: first hearing on May Day picket ban
May 14, Baranavičy City and District Court started considering the appeal of civil society activist Ryhor Hryk against the ban on the picket he intended to hold on May 1, issued by the Baranavičy City Executive Committee.
The activist believes that the reason for the ban is the intention of the picketers to demand the repeal of Decree No.3 "On prevention of social dependency," which violates the rights of citizens.
Mr. Hryk fulfilled the necessary conditions for holding mass events: he timely applied for the rally to the executive committee and attached to it a written undertaking to clean up after the picket, as well as to form a group of three people for guarding the public order during the event. The applicant concluded the necessary agreement with the city polyclinic for serving the picket, which he intended to hold at a site designated for such events by the executive committee.
At trial, the head of the legal department of the executive committee said that the reason for the
ban on the picket was the failure of the applicant to inform the authorities whether the picketers would use cars and pyrotechnics. Human rights defender Uladzimir Malei, who represents Mr. Hryk's interests at the trial, argued that the Law “On Mass Events” doesn't require the organizers of mass events to provide such information in their applications.
The next hearing was scheduled for May 21. According to Ryhor Hryk, the court dismissed his motions for summoning to the trial the deputy head of the Baranavichy City Executive Committee, who had signed the ban and the police officer, to whom the representative of executive committee had referred.