Aliaksandr (Ales) Bialiatski is the founder and head of human rights center Viasna and a Vice-president of FIDH (Fédération internationale des droits de l’Homme). Despite being officially shut down by the Supreme Court in 2003, Viasna is one of the few remaining organizations that continues to offer direct support to persecuted individuals and their families in Belarus, as well as practical and political assistance to other victims. Althought not a politican, Bialiatski’s advocacy has made him a central opposition figure in the country and the authorities have taken him to court in at least 20 instances. Bialiatski is the 2006 recipient of the Norwegian Helsinki Committee’s Andrei Sakharov Freedom Award. Since August 4, 2011, he has been imprisoned by the Belarusian government for his advocacy.
This website was created after the arrest of Ales Bialitaski, as an information portal about the struggle of Belarusian civil society, what has been done at the international level to end its harassment and what more can be done.
Human rights defenders and civil society in Belarus are subjected to harsh conditions. As a result, their plight has often been in the international spotlight, particularly in December 2010, when popular protest overs the 2010 Presidential elections was crushed by the State. Many people were arrested, harassed and beaten.
Arrested by the Belarusian authorities on grounds of “serious tax evasion” on August 4, 2011, Ales Bialiatski was subsequently condemned for his human rights activities. Ales Bialiatski is Vice-President of FIDH and President of the Belarus-based Human Rights Centre “Viasna”. Bialiatski’s case has become symbolic of the constant persecution that human rights defenders and representatives of civil society in Belarus as a whole are subjected to by the government.