Belarus

The Belarusian authorities clamp down on all manifestations of critical thinking. Human rights defenders and political opponents are the main targets. We monitor and report on the situation, to influence policy makers in Europe to work actively for democracy and respect for human rights in Belarus.

Read about the current human rights situation in our country report Human rights in Belarus

International Day of Solidarity with Civil Society in Belarus – August 04th

Ales 1

August 04th is celebrated as the International Day of Solidarity with Civil Society in Belarus. It is all the more important as the human rights landscape in Belarus has not improved, having been overshadowed by events in Russia and Ukraine. This was underpinned by Miklós Haraszti, the UN Special Rapporteur on Belarus in his report to the Human Rights Council at the end of June where he noted no real improvements in the human rights situation in the country.

Human Rights in Belarus

The Belarusian government continues to severely curtail freedoms of association, assembly, and expression, and the right to a fair trial. In 2012 new restrictive legislative amendments paved the way for even more intense governmental scrutiny of civil society organisations and human rights defenders. Harassment of human rights defenders, independent media, and defense lawyers by the authorities continues, including arbitrary bans on foreign travel. Several political prisoners remain behind the bars. Allegations of torture and mistreatment in custody persist. The UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Belarus calls the restrictions on human rights “systemic and systematic”.

Seminar: Meet Belarus most prominent human rights defender

Foto: Arkivbild Viasna ©Jura Sidun

After 1,052 days in prison Ales Bialiatski was granted an amnesty on June 21 of this year and immediately resumed his work as a human rights defender and President of Viasna. In cooperation with Östgruppen, Civil Rights Defenders invites you to meet with Ales on October 24 where you can hear about the current situation in Belarus and the country’s relationship with neighboring Russia and Ukraine.

Seminar: Meet Belarus’ most prominent human rights defender

Foto: Arkivbild Viasna ©Jura Sidun

After 1,052 days in prison Ales Bialiatski was granted an amnesty on June 21 of this year and immediately resumed his work as a human rights defender and President of Viasna. In cooperation with Östgruppen, Civil Rights Defenders invites you to meet with Ales on October 24 where you can hear about the current situation in Belarus and the country’s relationship with neighboring Russia and Ukraine.

Seminar: LGBT activist fighting oppression

Siarhei Androsenka became a police target when 71 activists from all over Belarus signed a application in the attempt to register the organisation Gay Belarus with the authorities. It didn’t take long until the regime responded. Activists were called in for questioning and police conducted raids on gay clubs in Minsk and Vitebsk. Others were stopped at the border and had their belongings searched. In at least one case, a member of the organisation was beaten in a police station. Hear Siarhei talk about the situation for LGBT people in Belarus and how it feels being forced into exile.