Statement #2 of the long-term International Monitoring Mission

January 3rd, 2011

Acting on behalf of the Committee on International Control over the Situation with Human Rights in Belarus, which unites representatives of human rights organizations from the OSCE countries together with international civil society organizations,
monitoring the overall situation with the observance of fundamental human rights in the Republic of Belarus, as well as the issues of defending human rights defenders and ensuring their professional activities;
emphasizing that human rights are subject to the direct and legitimate concern of the international civil society;
urging the government of the Republic of Belarus to follow the international obligations undertaken in the field of human rights, and urging the OSCE member states to control the fulfillment of these obligations according to the OSCE principles;

the International Observation Mission states the following:

Given the statement of the Committee on International Control over the Situation with Human Rights in Belarus of December 31st, 2010 on the non-renewal of the mandate of the OSCE office in Minsk, we are concerned about the possible decrease in the level of cooperation between the authorities of Belarus to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and other international organizations working in sphere of soft security and human dimension.

The Mission hopes that, despite the possible closure of the office, recommendations, reports and other applications on behalf of the OSCE and other international organizations on human rights situation in the Republic of Belarus will be constructively received by the government. We are waiting for Belarus authorities’ acts that would confirm its commitment to all the undertaken international obligations, including those within the CIS and the OSCE.
Under these conditions, we also believe it appropriate direction to the Republic of Belarus, OSCE Special Representative, with a mandate to work on the human dimension. In our opinion, for prompt and effective action in this direction may initiate "Moscow Mechanism" of the OSCE.

For information:
"Moscow Mechanism" - the control procedure in the framework of the OSCE, which allows the State / Member States to pursue the OSCE report, the OSCE member countries, allowing systemic human rights violations (in the human dimension commitments) and review of expert reports prepared on the identified violations of the governing bodies of the OSCE .

Head of the Mission
Andrey Yurov

News of Belarus

Tough sentences announced to Brest antifascists

A verdict was delivered today in the case of Brest antifascists acused of participation in a group fight with neonazis which happened on May 8, 2013.

Antifascists were tried under the art. 339.3 (malicious group hooliganism) and 147.2 (malicious bodily harm). The case was qualified as malicious due to the fact of pepper spray usage in the fight.

Dzmitry Stsyashenka got 5 years of penal colony with reinforced regime (339.3) and 500 euro of damages to be paid to the injured nazis.

Exclusive: European Union moves to suspend sanctions on Belarus

The European Union is likely to lift some sanctions on Belarus, including its travel ban on President Alexander Lukashenko, after he freed a group of political prisoners last month, diplomatic sources say.

An arms embargo against the former Soviet republic would remain. But in an overture to the man the West calls Europe's "last dictator", diplomats are looking at suspending visa bans and asset freezes on most of around 200 people under sanctions for rights abuses, some since disputed elections in 2004.