Schedule of events within the Week against the Death Penalty
The traditional Week against the Death Penalty will be held in various parts of Belarus on October 5-10. “The death penalty is the past”. This is the key message of awareness-raising activities within the Week.
Human rights activists suggest looking at the issue from a wider perspective and ponder on what losses it brings to the community.
The photograph used in the poster was taken in April 2017 at the site of mass executions near the village of Chajsy near Viciebsk. Thousands of people were shot their under Stalin’s rule, but today's authorities refuse to recognize the crimes of communism and argue that those were victim of World War II. At the same time, we know that a country with the death penalty can use it against political opponents, which occurred during the mass repression in the USSR. 2017 is, to a certain extent, a double anniversary: 100 years have passed from the date of the revolution that led to the mass executions, and 80 years since 1937, the peak of mass executions in the USSR. The images of skulls with bullet holes are an echo of those times, a reminder of irretrievable losses that the society suffers because of totalitarian regimes and the death penalty.
Schedule of events
Baranavičy. Screening and discussion of the film “The Life of David Gale” (2003, directed by Alan Parker) in the Cinema Club “Critical Thinking”. 6:30 pm
Homieĺ. Screening and discussion of the film “Salvador” (2006, directed by Manuel Huerga) in the Art Space “Kaŭčeh” (2A praspiekt Peramohi). 6:30 pm
Minsk. Public discussion “Death Penalty: Pros and Cons” with representatives of the Human Rights Center "Viasna" Ales Bialiatski and Valiantsin Stefanovich. Education space .PUNKT (23A vulica Kastryčnickaja, 2nd floor). 6:30 pm
Orša district. Visit to the sites of mass shootings near Kabyliackaja Hara and the Mahilioŭ highway. 4 pm
Discussion “Mass Repression and the Death Penalty” and a presentation of the documentary “The History of the Death Penalty in Belarus” (directed by Viktar Tratsiakou) with the participation of Andrei Paluda, coordinator of the campaign “Human Rights Defenders against the Death Penalty in Belarus”. Location: manor in the village of Staŭry. 6 pm
Brest. Concert “Rock for Life”. Club “Fantazija” (76 vulica Sikorskaha). 6 pm
Minsk. Concert “Rock for Life”. Club “RE:PUBLIC” (62/5 vulica Prytyckaha). 5:30 pm
Minsk. Presentation of an interactive social comic book “Mom, it’s me…” with the participation of Andrei Paluda, coordinator of the campaign “Human Rights Defenders against the Death Penalty in Belarus” and professional comics writers. Gallery TUT.BY (57 praspiekt Dziaržynskaha, 9th floor; Omega Tower). 6:30 pm
Minsk. Screening and discussion of the film "Salvador" (2006, directed by Manuel Huerga) with the participation of human rights defenders of “Viasna” Andrei Paluda and Nasta Loika. Educational space .PUNKT (23A vulica Kastryčnickaja, 2nd floor). 6:30 pm
During the day, human rights defenders and activists will hold street actions to disseminate information on the occasion of the World Day against the Death Penalty.
The Palais de l’Europe in Strasbourg will host a conference of the Council of Europe entitled “Return of the death penalty in Europe: genuine threat or populist fiction?”. Belarusian human rights defenders Valiantsin Stefanovich (HRC "Viasna") and Aleh Hulak (BHC) will take part in the conference. Opening at 9 am local time.
The Human Rights Center "Viasna" invites everyone to join the Week Against the Death Penalty by attending its activities and arranging new ones, including in social networks through the hashtags #DeathPenalty, #AbolitionNow, #Belarus and #We4Life2017. You can also download and print the posters of the Week: http://bit.ly/2xPr91u
The first Week against the Death Penalty was held by the Human Rights Center "Viasna" in 2013. The events were coordinated by the campaign "Human Rights Defenders against the Death Penalty in Belarus," an initiative working since 2009 to end this inhumane form of punishment and help Belarus access to the European values. Unfortunately, Belarus is the only country in Europe and the former Soviet Union, which still executes people.