On 6 July Supreme Court of Belarus Will Continue Consideration of Youth Christian Social Union Liquidation Case
On 4 June the defendants filed several petitions. The main of them concerned the possible transfer of the case consideration for a month to provide presence of the Union Head JKiryl Ihhatsik and a number of other persons who could give important testimonies. Judge Zabara didn’t satisfy the petition. The case consideration will be continued at 10 a.m. on 6 June.
It’s worth mentioning that the case consideration was going on in the Supreme Court of the Republic of Belarus on 2, 3 and 4 June. The trial was conducted in absence of the organization Head Kiryl Ihnatsik who was at that time outside the country, in the Russian Federation. The Ministry of Justice was represented by Aliaksandr Kharyton, the main specialist of the Board of Public Associations of the Ministry of Justice, who accused the youth organization of activity with repeated law violations.
The Republican Publican Association Youth Christian Social Union was registered in 1997. The main direction of the organization activity was cultural and educational work that concerned a wide specter of questions, including those of European integration and the problems of social xenophobia (in 2000-2001 the organization conducted a number of programs against negativism towards refugees).
During the Presidential election of 2001 the organization activists took part in the election monitoring. Members of the Republican Public Association Youth Christian Social Union also participated in the local election of 2003 at all levels – volunteer work during the agitation campaign, work in the head-quarters of democratic candidates and nomination as candidates all over the country. Three organization members were elected deputies to local Deputy Soviets.
During the Presidential election of 2001 the organization maintained active cooperation with other organization, first of all with the unregistered “Youth of United Civil Party”. In the end of 2002 activists of “Youth of United Civil Party” joined YCSU. On 17 November 2002 the assembly was conducted, at which the UCP activists were elected to governing positions. At this very assembly it was decided to change the organization name to Youth Christian Social Union Young Democrats in order to emphasize its democratic nature.
In the beginning of 2003 the Ministry of Justice conducted complex check-up of the organization activity and, basing on its results, filed the suit for liquidation of the organization.
The acting YCSU Head Andrey Kazakevich says: “If we speak about the facts that resulted in the suit for liquidation of the organization, we should divide the reasons into formal and real ones. The real reasons are our cooperation with the UCP and active participation in the social and political life. The organization started to widely express its public position. Since 1997 the organization hadn’t had any problems with the Ministry of Justice and was successfully re-registered in 1999. Only after participation in the election and cooperation with young members of the United Civil Party the trouble with the Ministry started. What concerns non-Statute activities (educational meetings) and mistakes in the accountancy, they are formal reasons for liquidation. Besides, the Ministry has pretensions to the organization Program, proposed at the last assembly. It contains such aims as building of the civil society, increasing of the role of youth in the social and political life. From the point of view of the Ministry of Justice, it also contradicts to the Statute, though this document mentions that the organization favors common European, democratic and Belarusian national values. So, the liquidation case is connected with the wish of the authorities to prevent active youth from participation in the public life.”