PACE committee outraged at treatment of Ales Bialiatski by Belarus authorities

05.10.2011 – The Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) has today expressed its dismay that Ales Bialiatski, a highly-respected human rights defender and Nobel Peace Prize nominee, has been arrested by the Belarusian authorities.

In a statement approved during a meeting on the fringe of the Assembly’s autumn session in Strasbourg, the committee said it was “outraged by the Belarusian authorities’ attempt to criminalise the funding of vital human rights work in Belarus by foreign donors, including European institutions and government agencies. This was done by treating monies channelled through accounts held in trust by Mr Bialiatski as his personal income for tax purposes.”

The committee expressed its solidarity with Ales Bialiatski and urged the Belarusian authorities to “stop persecuting him and all other Belarusian human rights defenders”.

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