On Sunday, July 18, a rally of solidarity with the detained human rights activists of “Viasna,” as well as with all Belarusian political prisoners, was held in the French capital. It was organized by the FIDH – International Federation for Human Rights, reports the human rights center “Viasna.”
The event was attended by Senator Rémi Fero in Paris, who noted in his speech that France should do its utmost and fight for the release of human rights defender Ales Byalyatski and his arrested colleagues until Belarus becomes a democratic country.
The senator also stressed that the chairman of Viasna, Ales Byalyatski, has been an honorary citizen of Paris since 2012.
FIDH Director-General Eleonore Morel said in her statement that almost 10 years ago, Ales Byalyatski, who was then FIDH Vice-President, was imprisoned for political reasons. Following his arrest, FIDH immediately launched a major campaign for his release, mobilizing the international community and advocating for Byalyatski at the highest level. In 2012, FIDH appealed to the UN, which declared his detention arbitrary and demanded his immediate and unconditional release. After spending 1,052 days (almost three years) in detention in harsh conditions, Ales Byalyatski was finally released.
“This new wave of repression is further proof that the Lukashenka’s regime is waging a systematic campaign to silence all remaining dissenting voices and suppress civil society in Belarus”, stressed the FIDH Director-General.
On behalf of FIDH, Eleonore Morel called upon the Belarusian authorities to end the repression and immediately release all political prisoners.
On 14 July 2021, another attack on civil society took place: searches, interrogations and detentions of human rights defenders, journalists, civil activists and members of non-commercial organizations took place all over Belarus. On this day 11 Viasna human rights defenders were detained.
After 72 hours of detention the “Viasna” chair Ales Byalyatski, member of the “Viasna” Board and vice-president of FIDH Valyantsin Stefanovich, lawyer of Viasna Uladzimir Labkovich and his wife, director of the Angels Band investor group, Nina Labkovich, remain behind bars.