Human rights defenders on the death penalty: "Murder is not justice"
October 5, the traditional Week against the Death Penalty begins. Its events will be held under the slogan “Murder Is Not Justice”. The cruelty and inhumanness of this kind of punishment are symbolized by the robe of a death convict, sent to the relatives of the executives instead of their personal belongings.
The coordinator of the campaign "Human Rights Defenders against the Death Penalty in Belarus" Andrei Paluda said that through the use of this robe in the Week's posters the campaign activists call on the society to reflect of what stands behind the death penalty – suffering of the relatives of the executed and the cynicism of the state.
“We prepare a special poster to each Week against the Death Penalty”. This year we made use of the robe of Aliaksandr Hrunou that had been sent to his mother after the execution after out request to issue the personal belongings of death row convicts to their relatives after their execution. Instead of personal belongings (clothes, diary) the state sent her a prison robe. This caused a severe stress for Aliaksandr's mother, who saved it and passed it to the campaign against the death penalty. A similar robe was sent to the mother of another death row convict, Pavel Sialiun. It was very hard for the mother to endure such cynicism on the part of the state, and she simply burnt the robe.”
The Week Against the Death Penalty, which will last from 5 to 10 October, is held in Belarus for the third year in a row. This year the geography of the informational and educational events has expanded to the neighboring countries” Belarusian human rights activists are supported by their colleagues and participants of the abolitionist movement in Lithuania, Poland, Ukraine and Kazakhstan. The Human Rights Center "Viasna" and the campaign "Human Rights Defenders against the Death Penalty in Belarus" invite everyone to join this action and actively use the posters, produced especially for the week, which can be downloaded at this link.