First United Human Rights Forum in Belarus

2004 2004-01-26T10:00:00+0200 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

First United Human Rights Forum in Belarus

The first united human rights forum was conducted not far from Minsk. The authorities almost disrupted the first human rights forum in Belarus. However, the fact that the hotel complex Raubichy refused to accept the forum participants on the eve of the measure, didn’t become a sufficient obstacle for the gathering of over a hundred people from different countries of the world for the two-day discussing.

Henadz Kesner

More than a hundred people came to the first forum of human rights defenders, held not far from the Belarusian capital. The measure was organized by the largest human rights organizations of the country, such as the Human Rights Center “Viasna”, Belarusian Helsinki Committee, Center on Human Rights, Belarusian Association of Journalists, etc. Head of “Viasna” Ales Bialiatski tells about the aims of the conference:

A.B.: -- The present situation with human rights in Belarus is quite complicated. Eights organizations, some of which are and some are not registered, organized this conference. There also gathered the widest circle of the persons who work in other non-governmental human rights organizations, journalists and ordinary people, interested in human rights issues. We couldn’t invite all of them, because there are to much people who pay interest to it, which is a very positive thing. At this forum we had two main topics: to evaluate the situation with the human rights in Belarus and to elaborate the recommendations for Belarusian human rights defenders, the country’s authorities and the Belarusian people. The third is to draw attention of our foreign partners, who came to the forum so that we could tell them what we expected from them.

The conference was in the danger of disruption: it’s organizers weren’t sure of the possibility to hold it in Yakub Kolas’ residence. According to Ales Bialiatski, at present it is impossible to hold such measure in Minsk.

A. B.: -- The application for holding of the conference in Raubichy wasn’t approved. In Minsk all large forums can’t rent any room, even at expensive costs.

According to the “Viasna” head, today Belarusian human rights defenders must join their forces.

A.B.: -- We have to unite in action. We elaborate common positions, common actions.

The human rights Forum was attended by representatives of the foreign embassies, accredited in Belarus, members of human rights organizations from the UK, Poland, Russia, Czech, Moldova and the Ukraine, members of the deputy group “Respublika” of the Chamber of Representatives.

Information Department of HRC “Viasna”

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