News for 28 May 2009

28.05.2009 Ministry of Justice denies registration to Nasha Viasna again

On 28 May the co-founders of the Nasha Viasna human rights association received a letter from the Ministry of Justice saying the NGO is once again denied registration. The human rights activists think the decision groundless and illegal. The official letter signed by Vice-Minister of Justice A.Bodak named the following facts as the grounds for the refusal: - ‘many of the co-founders of the association have been prosecuted by law, for offences connected with disturbing public order, as well the freedoms and rights of other persons.’ - ‘the list of the co-founders of the association features certain false or distorted data.’ - ‘the second part of the association’s name ‘Nasha Viasna’ does not correspond to the Charter of the organization.’ The Ministry of Justice also accuses Nasha Viasna of ‘obstructing’ the registration body’s inspection of the accuracy of the application documents.

28.05.2009 Amnesty International: Freedom of speech and civil activists persecuted in Belarus

The annual report of the international human rights organisation Amnesty International says that the situation with human rights in Belarus hasn’t changed: peaceful rallies are brutally disbanded, civil society activists and journalists were harassed.

“The government continued to exert excessive control over civil society. State control over the media increased,” AI experts noted.

“Some public events were banned; peaceful demonstrators were fined and detained for short periods; and civil society activists and journalists were harassed. Belarus continued to hand down death sentences and execute prisoners,” the report of the human rights organisation reads.

28.05.2009 Zmitser Khvedaruk taken to hospital again

“Young Front” activist Zmitser Khvedaruk, forcefully drafted into the army, has been taken to the Belarusian Military Hospital.

The guy, who has problems with ear, is to spend 10 days in hospital expects the weekend, when he won’t undergo medical procedures, mfront.by writes.

It should be reminded that on January 28, 2009, “Young Front” activist from Minsk Zmitser Khvedaruk was guarded to the military enlistment office, and then to a prison in Akrestsin Street allegedly for serving a punishment for participation in a rally on May 1, 2008. It became known later that there wasn’t a court decision. Nevertheless, Khvedaruk had to spend two days in prison.

28.05.2009 Oppositionist expelled from university for graffiti “Freedom to Autukhovich!”

“Young Front” activist Pyotr Ruzau was expelled from Baranavichy State University.

On May 12, the student of the Faculty of Finance and Law got an appropriate order signed by the rector. The document says the reason for expulsion is “violation of internal regulations”, press service of “Young Front” reports.

Ruzau was fined for drawing graffiti “Freedom to Autukhovich!” on the wall of the meat-processing factory.

“KGB and militia officers have visited the university several times this year, they threatened to expel me for my public activity. The trial for graffiti was obviously the last drop,” Pyotr Ruzau told.

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