death penalty tagged posts

Amnesty International: no changes with human rights situation in Belarus

Amnesty International report on Belarus

The influential international human rights watchdog has released its 2012 report.

It is stated in the report that political prisoners still remain in Belarus (5 people are named – Mikalaj Statkevich, Pavel Sevyarynets, Edward Lobau and Zmitser Dashkevich, Ales Bialiatski). Some people received additional prison terms, while civil society activists face violations of their rights to freedoms of speech, assembly and associations.

It is also stated that Belarusian human rights defenders faced various forms of harassment last year, including a the ban to leave Belarus. In 2012, 15 human rights defenders, journalists and opposition activists were sentenced to administrative detentions for swearing in public places.

Prisoners of conscience

Six people remained in prison in connection with their ...

Read More

Secretary general hopes that Belarus will join Council of Europe


Thorbjorn Jagland, secretary general of the Council of Europe, expressed hope that Belarus would join the organization and ratify the European Convention on Human Rights.

Speaking at a meeting of the Russian State Duma’s international affairs committee in Moscow, Mr. Jagland emphasized the importance of the convention, which he said provides a Europe-wide system of human rights protection, according to Russia’s Regnum news agency.

Belarus is the only country in Europe that is not a member of the Council of Europe. The main obstacle for Belarus’ accession to the Council is the use of the death penalty.

In 1993, the Belarusian parliament was granted special guest status at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), but was stripped of it in 1996 following a referendum that...

Read More

Statement by the Spokesperson of High Representative Catherine Ashton on a death sentence in Belarus


The Spokesperson of Catherine Ashton, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission, issued the following statement today:

“The High Representative regrets the death sentence recently handed down to an individual by the Mahilyow Regional Court. She hopes that his right to appeal will be fully exercised.

She is conscious of the serious nature of the crime for which this individual has been convicted. However, she does not believe that capital punishment can ever be justified. The European Union opposes capital punishment under all circumstances...

Read More

Opinions adopted by the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention concerning Ales Bialiatski’s case

United Nations

Human Rights Council

Working Group on Arbitrary Detention

Opinions adopted by the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention at its sixty-fourth session, 27-31 August 2012
No. 39/2012 (Belarus)
Communication addressed to the Government on 20 April 2012
Concerning: Aleksandr Viktorovich Bialatski The Government responded on 22 May 2012.
The State is a party to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.
1.    The Working Group on Arbitrary Detention was established in resolution 1991/42 of the former Commission on Human Rights, which extended and clarified the Working Group’s mandate in its resolution 1997/50, The Human Rights Council assumed that mandate in its decision 2006/102 and extended it for a three-year period in its resolution 15/18 of 30 September 2010...

Read More

Pavel Sapelka: “The award belongs to those, who struggled beside me, upholding the understanding of the freedom and independence of legal profession”

These days, human rights lawyer Pavel Sapelka has been presented the prestigious Human Rights Award 2012, awarded to him by the Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE). CCBE unites about 1 million of European lawyers of Bars and Law Societies.

“The Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE) granted Sapelko for his courage and perseverance to support the campaign “Human rights activists against death penalty” for the abolition of the death penalty in Belarus. Belarus is Europe’s last dictatorship. Many lawyers cannot practice their professional duties. Sapelko was a member of the Presidency of the Minsk City Bar. He was also involved in defending opposition members and political prisoners who were arrested after the last Belarusian presidential elections in December 2010...

Read More

FIDH strongly condemns the execution of two young men after a blatantly unfair trial

Paris, 19 March 2012 – On 16 March 2012, Dzmitry Kanavalau and Uladzislau Kavaliou were executed, two days after President Lukashenka rejected their request for clemency. The two men had been condemned to death on 30 November 2011 on charges of plotting a powerful blast in the Minsk underground in April 2011.

These executions are a further illustration of the total absence of an independent judiciary in Belarus, since the guilt of the two young men has not been clearly established and the trial was not fair. These capital shootings look like a way to silence two disturbing witnesses“, said Souhayr Belhassen, President of FIDH.

Both men were arrested on 12 April 2011, as the main suspects in orchestrating the explosion which killed 15 people in a metro station of Minsk, situated within 100...

Read More