17.08.2018 Picks of the Week
Sentence in trade union case expected on August 24; Prosecutor in Akciabrski caught red-handed with ready-made court ruling; court turns down first appeal against detention of critical journalists last week
15.08.2018 Political bias in REP trial ill-disguised, say IndustriALL observers
The politically motivated charges against Henadz Fiadynich and Ihar Komlik, leaders of the trade union REP, are “solely aimed at paralyzing the union activities,” say observers of the IndustriALL Global Trade Union after attending the trial that opened on July 30.
13.08.2018 Belarus cracks down on journalists and publishers as oppressive new media laws bite, UN expert warns
GENEVA (10 August 2018) – A wave of raids and arbitrary arrests targeting independent publishers and journalists in Belarus highlights oppressive new rules against internet media in the country, says the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights situation in Belarus, Miklós Haraszti.
11.08.2018 Picks of the Week
The sweeping and clearly disproportionate crackdown on independent journalists that started on August 7 and briefly paralyzed the work of the country’s leading news portal, tut.by, and the only private news agency, BelaPAN, has been making both national and international headlines during the week.
09.08.2018 BelaPAN chief editor detained, more journalists remain in custody
Iryna Leushyna, chief editor of the BelaPAN news agency, has been detained today, tut.by said. Her apartment has been searched and computer equipment seized.
08.08.2018 Four journalists still in detention, as searches of media continue
Maryna Zolatava, Hanna Kaltyhina and Halina Ulasik, editors of tut.by, the country’s leading online newspaper, as well as belapan.by journalist Tatsiana Karaviankova, remain in custody on charges of illegal access to the government-owned news agency BelTA. The whereabouts of one more tut.by editor, Hanna Yermachonak, is still unknown.
08.08.2018 Statement on searches of media outlets and arrests of journalists
On August 7, the Investigative Committee of Belarus said that it opened a criminal case under Part 2, Art. 349 of the Criminal Code (“illegal access to computer information obtained out of other personal interest, which caused significant damage”). Reports also said that the law-enforcement agencies detained journalists Maryna Zolatava, Hanna Kaltyhina, Halina Ulasik, Ulyiana Babayed (tut.by) and Tatsiana Karaviankova (BelaPAN). According to our information, several more journalists were also detained.
07.08.2018 7 journalists held in criminal case against independent websites
The Minsk offices of tut.by and belapan.by, Belarus’s biggest independent websites, have been searched by police this morning.
07.08.2018 Valiantsin Stefanovich: investigation fails to prove guilt in trade union case
The criminal case of trade unions is, above all, an echo of the global problems related to NGOs’ access to funds, says human rights activist Valiantsin Stefanovich, who has been observing the trial of REP leaders Henadz Fiadynich and Ihar Komlik. He has analyzed in detail the first phase of the trial, emphasizing the objectives pursued by the investigators.
06.08.2018 Viasna asks UN Special Rapporteur to intercede for LGBT activist Vika Biran
The Human Rights Center "Viasna" has written to Mr. David Kaye, United Nations Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, asking him to intervene in the case of LGBTQ+ activist Vika Biran, who was convicted for publicly expressing her civil position towards a homophobic article posted on the official website of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
03.08.2018 Belarus: trial observation reports breaches of international law in the trial of two trade union leaders
Paris-Geneva, August 3, 2018 – On July 30, 2018, the trial of two trade union leaders, Mr. Henadz Fiadynich and Mr. Ihar Komlik, opened before the Saviecki District Court of Minsk. The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders (FIDH-OMCT), which sent a judicial observation mission to Belarus earlier this week, reports a number of violations of fair trial standards, and reiterates its call to the authorities to put an end to all forms of harassment against human rights defenders in the country.
03.08.2018 Lars Bünger: I really hope changes can happen soon in Belarus
Viasna has talked to Lars Bünger, Chairman of Libereco – Partnership for Human Rights, one of our long-standing partners working on a number of crucial human rights issues in Belarus.
02.08.2018 Human Rights Situation in Belarus: July 2018
During the month, there were numerous cases of pressure on independent journalists and bloggers, freelancers, as well as arrests and administrative detention of peaceful protesters.
30.07.2018 Trial opens in trade union leaders’ tax-evasion case
The Court of Saviecki district of Minsk began today hearing the charges against Henadz Fiadynich, leader of the independent trade union of radio-electronic industry (REP), and the trade inion’s accountant Ihar Komlik. The activists are charged with large-scale tax-evasion (Part 2, Art. 243 of the Criminal Code).
27.07.2018 Picks of the Week
Freedom of expression is still severely curtailed in Belarus. This includes repressions against journalists and vocal critics of the regime.