Polish MPs urge Belarus to halt repression and start dialogue with civil society
On March 23, the Sejm of the Republic of Poland hosted parliamentary hearings with representatives of political parties and civil society of Belarus. Participants included, in particular, chairman of the Belarusian Association of Journalists Andrei Bastunets and Chairman of the Human Rights Center "Viasna" Ales Bialiatski.
Several opposition leaders were also expected to travel to Warsaw, including chairman of the United Civil Party Anatol Liabedzka, chairman of the Movement "For Freedom" Yury Hubarevich and BCD co-chairman Vital Rymasheuski. However, the politicians are currently serving arrest for participating in a peaceful protest.
Ales Bialiatski said that the event focused on the recent developments in Belarus. As a result, the Sejm adopted a resolution on the crisis in Belarus.
“The Commission of Foreign Affairs of the Polish Sejm expresses its deep concern about the growing wave of repression against participants in public protests, independent journalists and public figures of Belarus,” the document says.
The Commission calls on the Belarusian authorities to immediately stop the persecution and release all those arrested and convicted, and expresses its solidarity with the victims of repression, their families and friends.
Ales Bialiatski also said that the Commission expressed confidence that the only way to solve the social and economic crisis in Belarus was undertaking a dialogue between the authorities and the country’s civil society and democratic opposition.
According to the human rights activist, the appeal was adopted unanimously, which reflects the deep concern of the Polish MPs and politicians over the deteriorating situation in Belarus.
“The participation of civil society representatives in the work of the Polish Sejm has symbolic value as an expression of solidarity with victims of repression, with all of the Belarusian people during the difficult hours of our history,” Bialiatski said.