freedom of assembly tagged posts

Belarus violated right to peaceful assembly against UCP activist in Homel, says UN Human Rights Committee

The UN Human Rights Committee has said that the Belarusian authorities violated the right of the deputy chairman of the United Civil Party (UCP) Vasil Paliakou to peaceful assembly, by banning in September 2008 a mass event aimed to urge citizens not to take part in the parliamentary elections, which took place on September 28, 2008.

The UCP activist has received the decision dated July 17.

Vasil Paliakou submitted his complaint to the UN Human Rights Committee after he was unable to protect his rights within the country. In 2008, the Homel City Executive Committee did not allow him to hold a picket, demanding that he paid for police, public utilities and ambulance services.

In its decision, the UN Human Rights Committee says that if the government imposes a restriction on the freedom of ...

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Monitoring report on the results of observation of the rally “Chernobyl Way march 2014”

charnobyl-way2014

On the anniversary day of the Chernobyl disaster, 26 April 2014, an authorized rally was held in Minsk. The event is traditional for the Belarusian opposition and non-governmental environmental organizations. During the action a public observation by RHRPA “Belarusian Helsinki Committee” and Human Rights Centre “Viasna” was coducted by 10 observers. The observers filled unified observation charts in order to assess objectively the nature of the event as well as to note the possible human rights violations during it. According to the information from these charts the course of the mass event and the actions of the law enforcement officers and the participants has been noted...

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Minsk court convicts participants of Chernobyl Way rally

charnobyl-way2014

The court of Minsk’s Savetski district considered today administrative charges brought against six participants of yesterday’s Chernobyl Way rally, who were detained immediately after the meeting. In addition, the court heard the case of former political prisoner Aliaksandr Frantskevich, who was detained ahead of the demonstration.

Judge Maryna Fiodarava considered the administrative offence reports (Art. 17.1, hooliganism and Art. 23.34, participation in an unauthorized mass event) against Dzianis Karnou. Witnesses representing the police say that Dzianis Karnou was swearing and resisted when being dragged to a police car. The sentence is 20 days of arrest.

The case of Mikalai Kolas was considered by Judge Kiryl Palulekh...

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Chernobyl pickets banned in Vitsebsk, Navapolatsk and Hrodna

chernobyl-pickets-ban

Local authorities in Vitsebsk, Navapolatsk and Hrodan have banned a number of awareness-raising pickets, scheduled for April 26 to mark the anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster. According to the officials, the organizers failed to submit an appropriate application.

Four representatives of the political party Belarusian Popular Front in Vitsebsk sent a request to the administration of the Chyhunachny district to hold a picket in the local park. However, the bid was rejected, as the applicants failed to attach copies of the contracts as required by the City Executive Committee’s decision. It says that the organizers must sign contracts with the police, public utilities and health care departments. But these services refuse to enter into contracts with the activists...

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Brutal dispersal of protest event in support of Ukraine in Minsk

russia-ambasada-2014

On March 2, activists of various civil society movements tried to hold a protest action near the Embassy of the Russian Federation in Minsk. They were met by paddy wagons and policemen, most of whom were dressed in civvies. The “men in civvies” acted violently: they didn’t even let the protesters unfurl any posters and streamers. More than 25 people were detained at once, including passers-by.

According to information of human rights defenders, among the detainees there are a “Nasha Niva” correspondent Iryna Arekhouskaya, journalists Siarhei Hapon, Uladzimir Hrydzin, Artsiom Liava, Vital Siamashka, Ina Studzinskaya and Yauhen Yerchak, as well as socio-political activists Auhinnia Bahinskaya, Zmitser Dashkevich, Viktar Dudko, Liudmila Karavianskaya, Yana Kazakova, Henadz Lutsenka, Stani...

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UN Human Rights Committee to consider complaint against ban on picket in support of Ales Bialiatski

A letter received on January 23 by the former chair of Homel City Executive Committee Sviatlana Haldadze says the UN Human Rights Committee has registered the complaint, which she, together with Homel human rights defenders Anatol Paplauny and Leanid Sudalenka, filed in connection with a ban on a rally in support of political prisoner Ales Bialiatski expected to be staged on August 4, 2012.

Similar pickets were scheduled across the country. Applications for the pickets were filed in all the regional centers and other cities, but all the gatherings were banned.

Sviatlana Haldadze asks the Committee to establish a violation of her and the human rights defenders’ rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and freedom of expression and to recommend the Belarusian government to bring the Law “On Ma...

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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 ...

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Belarus: systemic and systematic human rights violations documented

Miklos Haraszti

In the Special Rapporteur’s assessment, human rights remain systemically and systematically restricted, especially in the case of the freedoms of association, of assembly, and of expression and opinion, as well as the guarantees of due process and fair trial.

The mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Belarus was established by the Human Rights Council in its resolution 20/13. In the present report, the Special Rapporteur, Miklós Haraszti, who officially assumed his functions on 1 November 2012, describes the prevailing situation of human rights in Belarus since the establishment of the mandate on 5 July 2012 and includes information received until 31 March 2013.

The aftermath of the presidential elections held on 19 December 2010 and the ensui...

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Authorities ban pickets in support of Bialiatski across Belarus

The executive authorities of a number of towns and cities across the country, including Hrodna, Babruisk, Smarhon and Brest, have banned pickets of solidarity with imprisoned Viasna leader Ales Bialiatski arranged to demand his release one year after his arrest on 4 August 2011.

Earlier, similar pickets were banned in Zhodzina, Biaroza, Vitsebsk and Homel.

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Minsk authorities ban over 60 pickets in support of Ales Bialiatski

None of over 60 pickets in support of imprisoned Viasna leader Ales Bialiatski expected to be staged by human rights defenders was authorized by Minsk executive authorities.

Despite the fact that the applications met the Mass Events Code, and the expected number of picketers ranged between 2 and 5 persons, all the pickets were banned. Human rights defenders received nearly identical responses, which in reality are formal roundabout replies. The reasons for the bans are traditional: “another event is scheduled”, “the exact location of the picket cannot be identified”, “the picket is believed to be interfering with the traffic and pedestrians”, etc...

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