You truly embed the meaning of “Right Livelihood”

2021 2021-09-17T14:35:29+0300 2021-09-17T14:35:29+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

Open letter of support to imprisoned members of Human Rights Center “Viasna”

Dear Ales, Valiantsin, Uladzimir, Marfa, Andrei, Leanid and Tatsiana,

Last year, we welcomed Human Rights Center “Viasna” into our large courage-powered community of Right Livelihood Laureates who dedicate their lives to social change all around the world. You all, as members of Viasna, truly embed the meaning of “Right Livelihood” through the unwavering courage you show in your everyday actions. Your work contributes to ensuring a just and peaceful society for all. One in which human rights will be at the centre of society and where abuses will be accounted for.

Today is a difficult anniversary. It marks one year since the arrest of Marfa and the beginning of yet another crackdown against Human Rights Center “Viasna.” We want you to know that, from every part of the world, we stand by you, today and every day. We will continue to closely monitor the situation in Belarus and will not let any of you be silenced. It is inspiring to continue to see that numerous Belarusians stand by their convictions day after day, asking for democracy. We will continue to demand for your immediate release, that of all political prisoners, and for accountability to be provided to perpetrators of human rights abuses. 

Together with other international NGOs, we are joining efforts to keep alive the spirit that has guided your work for more than 25 years.

On September 25, we will all keep Ales in our hearts on the occasion of his birthday. We wish that none of you will have to spend another one behind bars. You all deserve to be praised, never criminalised. 

We hope to be able to see you outside of prison as soon as possible. You are a real symbol of courage and should all be freed!


Warm regards,

Angie Zelter for Trident Ploughshares, United Kingdom, Right Livelihood Laureate 2001

Basil Fernando, Hong Kong, Right Livelihood Laureate 2014

Dipal Barua, former managing director of Grameen Shakti, Bangladesh, Right Livelihood Laureate 2007

Walden Bello, the Philippines, Right Livelihood Laureate 2003

Friends of the Earth Malaysia, Malaysia, Right Livelihood Laureate 1988

Ida Kuklina, for the Committee of Soldiers’ Mothers of Russia, Russia, Right Livelihood Laureate 1996

Petra Tötterman Andorff, Secretary General of The Kvinna till Kvinna Foundation, Sweden, Right Livelihood Laureate 2002

Raul Montenegro, Argentina, Right Livelihood Laureate 2004

Michael Succow, Germany, Right Livelihood Laureate 1997

Helen Mack, Guatemala, Right Livelihood Laureate 1992

Maude Barlow, Canada, Right Livelihood Laureate 2005

P K Ravindran, for KSSP, India, Right Livelihood Laureate 1996

International Baby Food Action Network, International, Right Livelihood Laureate 1998

Ruchama Marton for Physicians for Human Rights, Israel, Right Livelihood Laureate 2010

Martin von Hildebrand for Consolidation of the Amazon Region, Colombia Right Livelihood Laureate 1999

Tony Rinaudo, Australia, Right Livelihood Laureate 2018

Sulak Sivaraksa, Thailand, Right Livelihood Laureate 1995

Colin Gonsalves, India, Right Livelihood Laureate 2017

Juan Garcés, Spain, Right Livelihood Laureate 1999

András Bíró, Hungary, Right Livelihood Laureate 1995

Bianca Jagger, Nicaragua, Right Livelihood Laureate 2004

Theo van Boven, the Netherlands, Right Livelihood Laureate 1985

Erwin Kräutler, Brazil, Right Livelihood Laureate 2010

Monika Hauser, Germany, Right Livelihood Laureate 2008

Erik Dammann, founder of the Future in Our Hands Movement, Norway, Right Livelihood Laureate 1982

Alyn Ware, New Zealand, Right Livelihood Laureate 2009

Alice Tepper Marlin, United States of America, Right Livelihood Laureate 1990

Last year, Viasna and its leader Ales Bialiatski became the first Belarusian laureates of the prestigious international prize "Right Livelihood Award" known as the "Alternative Nobel". The Belarusian human rights activists were recognized for their role in the struggle for democracy and human rights in Belarus. Ales Bialiatski received the award at a ceremony that took place on December 3 in Stockholm.

Latest news