OSCE/ODIHR tagged posts

OSCE/ODIHR Director says Belarusian human rights defender should be released

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WARSAW, 25 November 2013 – Ambassador Janez Lenarčič, Director of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR), today reminded the Belarusian authorities of previous calls by OSCE Chairpersons-in-Office for the release of human rights defender Ales Bialiatski, who was found guilty on tax-evasion charges in 2011, and added his voice to theirs, calling Bialiatski’s case a violation of OSCE commitments.

Noting that Sunday was the second anniversary of Bialiatski’s conviction, Lenarčič highlighted Bialiatski’s case while expressing concern over the general situation for human rights defenders in Belarus.

The offence for which Bialiatsky was found guilty was the direct result of the authorities’ refusal to allow his organization to work to promote and prote...

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Competition limited in Belarus elections as many democratic rights not respected, international observers say

MINSK, 24 September 2012 – Many OSCE commitments on citizen’s democratic rights to associate, to stand as candidates and to express themselves freely were not respected in yesterday’s parliamentary elections in Belarus, concluded the international observers from the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) and the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly (OSCE PA).

The elections were not administered in an impartial manner and the complaints and appeals process did not guarantee effective remedy, the observers found.

“This election was not competitive from the start,” said Matteo Mecacci, Special Co-ordinator, who led the short-term OSCE observer mission...

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OSCE human rights chief : Belarus trials highlight need for substantial justice reform

WARSAW, 10 November 2011 – The trials conducted in the aftermath of the 19 December 2010 presidential election in Belarus highlighted the need for a substantial reform of the country’s justice system, Ambassador Janez Lenarčič, the Director of the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) said today following the publication of a report on the findings of ODIHR’s trial monitors.

From March to July, ODIHR observed 12 trials involving a total of 41 defendants, including five presidential candidates, who had been charged for their participation in a demonstration in Minsk on election night.

“Our monitoring revealed a number of significant concerns in the application of fair trial standards,” Lenarčič said...

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