Trade union leader menaced by criminal case

2012 2012-02-16T15:35:28+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

Yesterday the leader of Alyaksandr Yarashuk the Belarusian Congress of Democratic Trade Unions (BCDTU) was summoned to the Prosecutor’s office of Belarus for offering explanations.

The Office of Prosecutor General found elements essential to the offence in the statement of Alyaksandr Yarashuk about possibility of boycott of Belarusian goods in the EU in connection with violations of trade unions rights.

Alyaksandr Yarashuk was to give explanations for more than 3 hours, informs.

The chief of the department of supervision over lawmaking and legality of legal acts Pavel Radzivonau and two more officers of the prosecutor’s office have officially warned Alyaksandr Yarashuk that his actions could be qualified under Article 361 Part 2 of the Criminal Code as “appeals addressed to a foreign state, or an international organization to commit actions damaging external security of Belarus, its sovereignty, territorial integrity and national security and defence, or for dissemination of materials with such appeals.” And besides, under Article 369 Part 1 of the Criminal Code for “offering a foreign state or international organization information which is known to be false, on economical, political, social or military situation in Belarus, drediting Belarus or its authorities (Discrediting the Republic of Belarus).” Actions mentioned in these articles are punished by imprisonment term from 2 to 5 years.

Alyaksandr Yarashuk told to the representatives of the prosecutor’s office that the threat of boycott of Belarusian goods is not directly connected with his statement. It is a result of years-long and systematic violations of human rights and trade unions rights and failure of the government to follow requirements of the Constitution and laws of the country, the International Conventions of the International Labour Organization Nr 87 and 98.

The leader of BCDTU stressed that the international trade union movement and the ILO are well-informed about the situation in Belarus, and are worriedly and closely watching its development. They are ready for most decisive actions to defend Belarusian workers and their organizations. It also concerns the independent trade union at “Granit” plant in Mikashevichy, which members have been denied a right for freedom of association.

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