Death penalty is Belarus’ internal matter, say House of Representatives members

2012 2012-02-24T16:44:05+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en

The issue of abolishing the death penalty is Belarus’ internal matter, says a joint press release by the foreign affairs committee and the committee on legislation and judicial affairs of the House of Representatives of the Belarusian National Assembly, issued following the 16 Feb. European Parliament resolution.

“The resolution of the European Parliament on death penalty in Belarus is nothing but a continuation of its pressure tactic on the Belarusian authorities and interference with the domestic affairs of the country”, says the Parliament’s press release.

Belarusian MPs point out that “by taking into account the data of some non-governmental organizations the European Parliament calls the decision of the Supreme Court of Belarus on Minsk bombers Dmitry Konovalov and Vladislav Kovalev an unfair verdict.”

“The investigation of the case was maximally open including to the media. Referring to some anonymous observers of the trial, the authors of the resolution mention serious procedural violations throughout the juridical examination,” the Belarusian MPs said.

According to the House of Representatives, international law (Art.6 of the International Pact on Civil and Political Rights) allows capital punishment for especially grave crimes.
“The Republic of Belarus adheres to its international commitments. According to the Criminal Code of Belarus, capital punishment is allowed only for crimes related to first-degree murders and prohibited for execution in regard to women, minors and men over 65,” parliamentarians noted.
“In this regard we state that abolition of the death penalty is an internal affair of the Republic of Belarus. Any decision on this issue is possible only taking into account the opinion of the Belarusian people,” the MPs added.   

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