Human Rights Watch World Report 2016: “Overall human rights situation in Belarus in 2015 did not improve”
“President Aliaksander Lukashenka released on humanitarian grounds six opposition figures who had been imprisoned on politically motivated charges, but the overall human rights situation in Belarus in 2015 did not improve,” said Human Rights Watch in its annual World Report 2016.
“The death penalty remains in use. Officials pressure and arrest human rights activists and critics on spurious charges. Authorities regularly harass independent and opposition journalists. Legislative amendments further restricted freedom of expression, in particular Internet freedom.
Observers deemed the October presidential elections insufficiently transparent and flawed due to significant irregularities with vote counting. While Belarus held its first human rights dialogue with the European Union since 2009, authorities continued to refuse cooperation with the United Nations special rapporteur on Belarus. In a positive development, in September, Belarus signed the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities but has yet to take the necessary steps to become a full party to the treaty,” says the Report.
Download the full report at Human Rights Watch website.