Statement on national solidarity in defense of freedom and the rule of law in Belarus
We, representatives of political parties and public organisations declare: Belarusian authorities deliberately and continuously destroy the political opposition and civil society.
After destroying the independent sociology the state tries to intimidate, destroy and take control of the independent media, independent trade unions, to prevents growth and activity of new leaders, as well as social and political organisations capable of true expression and representation of the people’s interests.
All of this suggests that the current Belarusian government is incapable of democratic transformation and can only carry out repressive policies against business, media, political, social and religious organisations. In recent years in Belarus only the forms of repression have changed, but their intensity stayed on the high level.
Full responsibility for the violations of the rights and freedoms of citizens, attacks on the independent media and private business, independent trade unions, political organisations, as well as failures in the economy lies on the leadership of the Republic of Belarus.
We are addressing:
Belarusian citizens to exercise solidarity with those who are in the grip of the regime for attempting to change the situation in the country through peaceful means, to join democratic political parties and non-governmental organisations to stand together for the protection of the rule of law and justice;
Representatives of civil society to exercise solidarity, publicly condemn the repression against citizens and independent organisations, to join the general campaign in defense of the repressed;
Representatives of business sphere to show solidarity and support those suffering from the repressions and is able of being an real alternative to the current government and to advocate for the rule of law in Belarus;
International community to revise the terms of cooperation with the Belarusian authorities and to shape the agenda of cooperation with the human rights as top priority, demanding the reform of judicial system and elections according to the OSCE standards. We draw attention to the fact that the lifting of the sanctions by the European Union in 2016 did not improve the situation with human rights and freedoms in Belarus and the absence of a significant international response to the violation of human rights allows the Belarusian authorities to carry out new repressions against the civil society;
Belarusian authorities with the demand to stop political repressions against the opponents, pressure on the independent media and trade unions, business representatives and civil society as well as to stop the prosecution of journalists and leaders of independent trade unions, blocking of independent media, to immediately stop the persecution of the memorial “Kurapaty” defenders and participants of other peaceful protests, to begin the process of registration of political parties, which practically stopped in 2000.
We demand to implement the changes to the electoral law, taking into account the proposals of the democratic opposition and to hold elections by the OSCE standards, and to take immediate reform juridical system, which for long does not meet modern challenges.
We emphasize: the repressive policy against the independent media, organisations and individuals will inevitably lead to an increase in the confrontation in the society, deprive Belarus of the chances to effectively respond to the challenges of hybrid threats.
With the existing external threats the national consensus regarding the protection of the independence, democratic reforms and free elections needs to be achieved for the future of Belarus and safety of its citizens.