Viasna’s Valiantsin Stefanovich elected FIDH vice-president
The 40th World Congress of the International Federation for Human Rights has completed its work in Taiwan with the election of president and vice-presidents. Alice Mogwe, a human rights lawyer from Botswana, has been elected FIDH President for the next three years. She previously served as the organization’s secretary-general.
“Our fellow human rights defenders the world over are criminalized, disappeared, threatened, and even killed. The space given to us to express ourselves is shrinking. It is thus more important than ever to emphasize that our values are universal and that we must fight back!” Alice Mogwe said after her election.
The Congress also elected 15 vice-presidents in the regions, including three representatives for Europe and Central Asia: Artak Kirakosyan (Armenia), Talekan Ismailova (Kyrgyzstan) and Valiantsin Stefanovich (Belarus, Human Rights Center “Viasna”).
According to Stefanovich, his election will help ensure that the voice of the human rights community of Belarus is heard in the international arena.
“For us, for Viasna, FIDH's membership is extremely important, because we act together in many areas. It helps us conduct international advocacy, and provides us with more opportunities to talk about the human rights situation in Belarus at the international level,” Viasna activist said.
The Human Rights Center “Viasna” joined the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) 15 years ago. Viasna chairman Ales Bialiatski thrice served as vice-president for Europe and Central Asia.