Belarusian human rights defender Ales Bialiatski and Lyudmila Alexeyeva, Head of Moscow Helsinki group, have been nominated for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize. “The both issued a challenge to authoritarian government institutions and abuse of powers,” Norwegian PM Jan Tore Sanner who has put them forward for the award.
Both candidates were once nominees for the Nobel Peace Prize. But on October 12, 2012 the Nobel Prize Committee decided to award the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize to the European Union for over six decades’ contribution to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights in Europe.
Ales Bialiatski, Vice-President of the International Federation for Human Rights, was sentenced to 4.5 years of imprisonment in a medium security penal colony and seizure of property for alleged tax evasion. The fact of his holding bank accounts in Poland and Lithuania gave the grounds for criminal prosecution. The cash standing to the credit of accounts was used for human rights defence activity: the centre financially supported the people affected by Lukashenka’s regime. In court Bialiatski stated that he had no other possibility of getting financial aid from foreign backers.