FIDH tagged posts

Ales Bialiatski : “Paris, Paris… but I return home”


Excerpts of letters from the political prisoner Ales Bialiatski, head of the Belarusian Human Rights Center Viasna and vice-president of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH).

2 December 2012, Babruysk

The International Executive Board of FIDH was due to hold one of its three annual regular sessions in late June 2011. Vice-presidents and deputy secretaries general of the Federation came from all over the world to attend this meeting, which focused on tactical issues related to the Federation’s current activities in hot spots throughout the world, where our colleagues sometimes put their own lives at risk as they work tirelessly to protect the rights of civilian populations...

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Prison solidarity: Bahrain-Belarus


Nabeel Rajab, the head of the Bahrain Center for Human Rights and Deputy Secretary General of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), who is in custody in Bahrain, sends his Belarusian counterpart on the International board of FIDH, political prisoner Ales Bialiatski words of solidarity.

On 2 December, the day when the court denied his request for early release (for which he has the right under national legislation, as he has served more than three-quarters of the term), Nabeel was able to call from the Bahraini prisons “Jaw” to the International Secretariat FIDH and convey that he is very worried about the fate of Alesi Bialiatski...

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Human rights violations in Belarus discussed at UN side-event


On October 30, 2013 New York City hosted a side event at the UN General Assembly with the participation of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Belarus, Mr. Miklos Haraszti, and the Belarusian and international human rights defenders: Valiantsin Stefanovich, deputy chairman of the Human Rights Center “Viasna”, Zhanna Litvina, leader of Belarusian Association of Journalists, Sasha Koulaeva, head of FIDH’s Eastern Europe and Central Asia Desk.

The event was organized by FIDH, Amnesty International and the Barys Zvozskau Belarusian Human Rights House, and moderated by Amnesty International’s representative to the UN Jose Luis Diaz.

The event aroused great interest and was attended by many members of national delegations to the United Nations, including the ambassado...

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Recap of the Third Belarusian Human Rights Defenders Forum in Vilnius by FIDH


The meeting, which took place on 26 and 27 October 2013, was organised by leading Belarusian Human rights groups [1], with the support of international organisations, including FIDH.

The Forum was opened by Taciana Reviaka, Belarusian Human Rights House President and HRC Viasna board member, and FIDH President, Karim Lahidji. In his welcome speech, Karim Lahidji recalled the history of FIDH’s cooperation with the Belarusian human rights community. He reiterated FIDHs support for Belarusian civil society and recalled the detention of prominent defender and HRC Viasna President, Ales Bialiatski, in a penal colony in Bobruisk since 2011. Bialiatski, who initiated the first Forum in the series back in 2004, was recently re-elected as vice-president of FIDH. An empty chair was left for Ales ...

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Political prisoners in critical situation and restricted freedom for 33 activists


FIDH and its member organisation in Belarus, Human Rights Center Viasna, publish an update of its note on political prisoners in Belarus.

Both organisations are outraged at the large-scale and systematic acts of repression being inflicted upon both political prisoners and individuals whose freedom has been restricted for political reasons. It hereby releases a document detailing this repression and calls upon the regime to cease its oppressive behavior.

Evidence gathered by FIDH and its member organisation in Belarus, Human Rights Centre Viasna, clearly contradicts the statement made at a press conference on 14 February 2013 by the Belarusian Deputy Prosecutor, General Alyaksey Stuk, that the detention conditions of the 9 detainees currently identified by our organisations as political pr...

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A modern and just society cannot be based on the ideology of death: Abolish the death penalty!


The 11th World Day Against the Death Penalty is marked today, on October 10, 2013. Throughout the world, civil society activists and abolitionism associations unite to remind the international community about the absurdity of the punishment and the cruelty of executions.

Long Live Death!” With these words, Franco’s rebels would celebrate their victories during the Spanish Civil War of the 1930s. Thus, states that prefer death to life and barbarism to the mind have always existed and, unfortunately, continue to exist. The death penalty itself is a manifestation of this distorted thinking.

58 more or less affluent countries that are either democracies or dictatorships can now legally sentence one of its citizens to death...

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FIDH President Karim Lahidji: the principle of non-interference is a fig leaf covering inaction


Iranian lawyer Karim Lahidji became the head of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) this May. In Iran, where he worked with defense of political prisoners, he was exposed to arrests and assaults and even an explosion attempt. When it became evident that the Iranian powers would not hesitate to murder the unwanted lawyer, Karim left the country and continued his fight for the fate of the Iranian nation abroad. But Karim Lahidji’s goal is to help other countries ruled by dictators, such as Belarus.

The FIDH President answered the questions of editor-in-chief of Natallia Radzina.

- Mister Lahidji, it is the first time an Iranian became the head of the FIDH. You know from your own experience how dictatorships function...

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Human Rights Defenders Discuss Violations of Human Rights in Belarus with Dutch Officials

human rights belarus_netherlands

The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and the Netherlands Helsinki Committee (NHC) invited a delegation of Belarusian and Russian human rights defenders to raise issues regarding the systematic violation of human rights in Belarus with Dutch officials.

Over the course of the three-day visit, Valentin Stefanovich, Vice President of Human Rights Center “Viasna”, Zhanna Litvina, chairperson of the Belarusian Association of Journalists (BAJ), and the Russian human rights defenders Olga Zakharova and Yuri Dzhibladze from the Committee on International Control over the Human Rights Situation in Belarus all visited the Hague and Amsterdam, where they held a series of meetings at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Dutch Parliament and met with representatives of international a...

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Zmitser Dashkevich released, while 11 other political prisoners remain detained


Paris-Minsk, 30 August 2013 – FIDH and its member organisation in Belarus, the Human Rights Center (Viasna), welcome the 28 August release of Zmitser Dashkevich, leader of the civil and political organisation Young Front, after his having completed his full prison term for charges of “malicious hooliganism” and “repeated failure to obey prison authorities”.

FIDH and Viasna note that in the recent months the already serious human rights situation in Belarus has only deteriorated and Dashkevich’s release should by no means be considered to be a sign of improvement. Our organisations would like to bring attention to the fact that not only had Dashkevich completed his full prison term, but none of the charges against him were dropped...

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Sacha Koulaeva: In Belarus, restrictions are placed on prisoners of conscience even after their release


Demonstrations of solidarity with civil society in Belarus have taken place all over the world. While citizens of many countries are able to express their position and show their solidarity with prisoners of conscience, it remains a sad fact that Belarusian citizens cannot do this. Sacha Koulaeva, head of the Eastern Europe and Central Asia Desk at the Paris-based International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), believes that citizens of Europe are quite well-informed about the problems democratic society in Belarus is facing and about the situation with human rights in the country.

Sacha Koulaeva: This year demonstrations of solidarity have been taking place in a wide range of countries, particularly within Europe...

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