Belarus, Russia sharing data to prevent citizens from travelling to third countries

Belarus has completed its domestic procedures to ratify the Belarusian-Russian intergovernmental agreement on the order of sharing information regarding the citizens of Belarus and Russia who have a restricted right to leave the country in line with the legislations of the two countries, state-run news agency BelTA reports.

The agreement was officially published on the National Legal Internet Portal on 17 November, 17.

Under the document, the parties share data on the citizens of the two states, who are restricted from leaving the country in line with the legislation of the state of their citizenship and/or the state of the current stay.

According to the agreement, such data sharing is necessary to prevent the citizens of Belarus and Russia with restrictions on leaving the country to travel to third countries as well as to prevent any threats to the national and public security of the Union State.

The agreement on the order of sharing information was signed in Moscow on March 3, 2015. On November 3, the law on the ratification of the agreement was okayed by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

There are fears that the the both regimes might use the agreement to exert pressure on dissidents. For example, in 2012 Belarusian preident Alyaksandr Lukashenka and his minions blacklisted a group of persons who ‘called on foreign states and international organizations to impose economic and other sanctions against Belarus’. As a result, opposition politicians Valery Ukhnaliou, Anatol Lyabedzka, Alyaksandr Dabravolski, Syarhei Kalyakin, Viktar Karnyayenka, Stanislau Shushkevich, Vintsuk Vyachorka, human rights defenders Valyantsin Stefanovich, Aleh Vouchak, Aleh Hulak, Harry Pahaniayla, Andrey Bandarenka, journalists Mikhas Yanchuk, Zhanna Litvina, Andrey Dynko were prohibited from travelling abroad. To reach their destination, some had to depart from the territory of Russia.

Such opportunity will aparrently be removed in the near future., following BelTA

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