Belarusians are now tried for "using foreign aid to carry out extremist activities"
As it became known to Viasna human rights activists, as a result of the January 23-24 crackdown, when more than 200 people were detained throughout Belarus, several people were convicted under Part 2 of Article 24.15 of the Administrative Code: "the use of foreign gratuitous aid to carry out terrorist and other extremist activities or other actions prohibited by law." This article has not been used in Belarus before. Viasna human rights activist Pavel Sapelka comments on a new repressive practice of the Belarusian authorities.
The human rights defender believes that most likely the authorities target citizens who used the help of an initiative supporting the families of political prisoners.
"This is an arbitrary persecution of people who have not violated any legal rules, namely illegally spending support funds for "carrying out terrorist and other extremist activities or other actions prohibited by law." In this case, this is a prerequisite for prosecution.
Besides, Belarus' policy in regulating foreign and international aid has repeatedly been the subject of criticism by human rights defenders and international organizations, as it infringed on many inalienable rights and freedoms, for example, freedom of association and freedom of opinion and expression."
If you have been prosecuted under Part 2 of Article 24.15 of the Administrative Code or you know the details of the persecution under this article, please inform human rights defenders via Telegram @Viasnainfo.
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