News from Ales Bialiatski

Freeales.fidh.net 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.

UN recognizes that Belarus violated the rights of Ales Bialiatski

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Remarkable decision against states that violate the freedom of association.

Paris-Minsk, 17 November 2014 In a decision that will go down in history, on 24 September 2014 the UN Human Rights Committee officially recognized that the Republic of Belarus violated the rights of Ales Bialiatski, President of Human Rights Centre “Viasna” and FIDH Vice President. The Committee recognized violations of Article 9 (the right to liberty and security of the person), Article 14 (the right to justice and a fair trial), and Article 22 (freedom of association) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). This decision follows an individual communication from Ales Bialiatski’s spouse Natalia Pinchuk, represented by FIDH Director General Antoine Bernard...

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A meeting with Ales Bialiatski was held in Mogilev

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A meeting with the president of the Human Rights Center “Viasna” Ales Bialiatski was held on September 19 in Mogilev.

This is the first visit of a former political prisoner in Mogilev after his release from Bobruisk colony in June. Several dozens of Mogilev citizens, who came to the meeting, greeted Ales Bialiatski, former political prisoner, with applause.

During the meeting, the human rights defender presented his book “Mercurial silver of life,” which consists of the essays written by him in custody. In the essays that Ales Bialiatski was sending from Bobruisk colony, he describes the work of human rights defenders before and after the events of 2010 in Belarus, tells the story of the participation of international human rights missions...

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Ales Bialiatski presented his book in Grodno

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There was held the first public meeting after the release of human rights defender, the president of the Human Rights Centre “Viasna” Ales Bialiatski in Harodnia. The core of the meeting was the presentation of his book “Mercurial silver of life.” The book is written in prison, when he had to write in very unfavorable conditions.

Ales Bialiatski is saying:
– All the texts in the book can be divided into two parts. These are memories of my life and of maybe interesting moments in which I was, which are important for our social life, because, in principle, we don’t have as much as we wish such a genre like memories. We lived 25 years, almost a quarter of a century, of a very active social life and there were ups and downs during this life.

The main technical work on the book has fulfilled ...

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Bialiatski’s book “Quick Silver of Live” presented in Vitsebsk

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The author, ex-political prisoner Ales Bialiatski came there together with the compiler of the book Alena Laptsionak. At a meeting in the “European club” they told the story of the creation of a collection of essays written in the Babruisk penal colony, where he served a prison term for his human rights activities.

The book “Quick Silver of Life. Prologue. Essays of a Human Rights Defender” is devoted to the Belarusian and international human rights movement, as well as to the events of 2010 in Belarus. The publication includes letters with the memories and reflections describing the everyday life and the events preceding the arrest of Mr. Bialiatski, as well as details of his foreign missions.

During the meeting, Ales Bialiatski said that the opportunity to write this book greatly supp...

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Ales Bialiatski’s The Quicksilver of Life presented in Minsk

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The Quicksilver of Life is the first book by Chairman of the Human Rights Center “Viasna” and vice-president of FIDH Ales Bialiatski, which was presented in Minsk on July 22 with the participation of the author.

The former political prisoner was released a month ago, on June 21, when the book was already printed. But its presentation was put off till today. The book consists of a series of essays, or rather, letters from Ales Bialiatski, which he sent to his colleagues during his detention in Babruisk colony No. 2.

According to the compiler of the book, Alena Laptsionak, she literally had to decipher the complex handwriting of Viasna’s leader and then to send the text back for editing...

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Recently released human rights activist Ales Bialiatski concludes European tour in Warsaw

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Belarusian human rights activist, Ales Bialiatski, visited Warsaw from July 9 to 12 – the final stop in a European tour that has taken him to Vilnius, Brussels, Strasbourg and Paris since his unexpected release under an amnesty on June 21. Bialiatski had served three years of a 4.5 year sentence ontrumped-up charges of tax evasion.

Bialiatski, head of the Minsk-based Human Rights Center “Viasna”, came to Warsaw on the invitation of the Polish Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights and the Stefan Batory Foundation. Here he met with top Polish politicians, including the Head of the President’s Office, Jacek Michalowski, Foreign Affairs Minister Radek Sikorski, as well as former Polish dissident Adam Michnik and other civil society representatives.

During an open meeting at the Batory Foundati...

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Ales Bialiatski’s first visit to Poland after release from jail

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“For the three years I spent in prison, I was struck by the fact that many non-political, cultural, linguistic and social initiatives appeared in Belarus. This proves that our civil society develops,” stated Mr. Bialiatski at a meeting in Warsaw. His visit to the Polish capital completes the tour of the Belarusian human rights activist across European countries.

Chairman of the Human Rights Center “Viasna” came to Warsau on invitation of the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights and Stefan Batory Foundation. The visit began on Wednesday, July 9, with a closed-door meeting with representatives of the Helsinki Foundation for Human Rights, at which the human rights sector discussed the situation in Belarus. “It was a friendly meeting with representatives of the human rights organization...

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Ales Bialiatski received at Paris Mayor’s Office and French MFA

The first visit of the Vice-President of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) Ales Bialiatski to Paris has come to an end. Before this, he had last visited Paris three years ago, a month before his arrest. All subsequent years members of the Federation throughout the world held solidarity actions and took every effort to secure his release.

FIDH staff, young activists, interpreters – all those who played an active part in the fate of the recent political prisoner – gathered for the long awaited meeting.

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Ales Bialiatski met European Parliament President

Martin SCHULZ - EP President, Ales BIALIATSK, Belarus Human Rights defender

Belarusian human rights activist, head of the Center “Viasna” and Vice-President of the International Federation for Human Rights Ales Bialiatski and European Parliament President Martin Schulz exchanged information on the situation in Belarus.

My signal to Mr. Schultz was to continue the efforts they have made for all these years, since December of 2010, for the release of political prisoners. It is also necessary that they continue to demand complex changes related to human rights and the state of democracy in Belarus,” Ales Bialiatski commented to RFE/RL after the meeting.

Mr. Schultz is aware of what is happening with us...

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PACE President meets with Ales Bialiatski upon his release

Visit by  Mr Bialiatski.Visite de M. Bialiatski.

On July 3, Ales Bialiatski, President of the Belarusian human rights centre Viasna and Vice-President of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and FIDH President Karim Lahidji met in Strasbourg with Anne Brasseur, President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE).

Mrs Brasseur used this opportunity to congratulate Mr Bialiatski in person, on behalf of the Assembly, on the award of the first Vaclav Havel Human Rights Prize. The Prize was awarded to Mr Bialiatski by the Assembly in September 2013, but the laureate, imprisoned since 2011, was unable to attend the ceremony. The President discussed with Mr Bialiatski the human rights situation in Belarus and the role that the Assembly needs to play to improve it.

Mr Bialiatski is for us a symbol of an un...

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