Opposition Politicians Hand Joint Appeal to PACE Rapporteur
On August, 24 the leaders of the Belarusian opposition met with the head of the working group on Belarus of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, Ms. Sinikka Hurskainen.
The meeting was attended by the chairman of the United Civil Party Anatoly Lebedko, the leader of the Left "Fair World" party Sergei Kalyakin, chairman of the Belarusian Popular Front Alexei Yanukevich, Co-Chair of the Belarusian Christian Democracy Vital Rymashevsky, the leader of the Movement For Freedom Alexander Milinkevich and the chairman of the Belarusian Social Democratic Hramada Stanislav Shushkevich.
During the meeting the Belarusian politicians handed joint appeal to Ms. Hurskainen.
Appeal of the democratic forces of Belarus to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and the Council of Europe
A democratic, free election is the main condition to restore Belarus’ special guest status in the Council of Europe and the PACE.
Stating, that the current Belarusian authorities in their laws and enforcement practices systematically contradict the values, purposes and principles of the Council of Europe and the PACE, violate human rights and fundamental freedoms, including political,
Considering, that the prospect of entering Belarus in the Council of Europe and restoring of special guest status in the PACE will be a chance and an incentive for the establishment of democracy in Belarus,
Recalling, that the Belarusian authorities have not complied with the requirements contained in the PACE resolution on the abduction and murders of opponents of the Belarusian regime, as well as the Assembly’s demand to abolish the capital punishment
Recalling, that there are still political prisoners in Belarus
We, the leaders of the democratic parties and movements of the Republic of Belarus state that:
1. We fully support the values, goals and principles of the Council of Europe and consider its implementation in Belarus as the main priority;
2. We support the proposal of the PACE Political Committee to form an expert group from the representatives of the government and the opposition on a parity basis in order to develop a road map, phased plan for the approximation of Belarus to full membership in the PACE and the Council of Europe;
3. The decision on restoring special guest status for Belarus should be taken in accordance with the Article 4 of the Charter of the Council of Europe and only after a presidential campaign in Belarus in accordance with the OSCE standards, namely: to include the representatives of all presidential candidates in the election commissions, to set a moratorium on political prosecution of the regime opponents, to provide media freedom;
4. Negotiations on the restoring special guest status for Belarus should be resulted in signing the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, and thus accepting the jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights, as well as signing the European Charter of Local Self-Government.
Chairman of the United Civil Party
Chairman of the Belarusian Social Democratic Party (Gramada)
Chairman of the Party "Fair World"
Chairman of the Belarusian Party of Women "Nadzeya"
Chairman of the organizing committee for creation of the Labor Party
Co-Chair of the organizing committee for the creation of BCD
Chairman of the organizing committee for creation of the Belarusian Social Democratic Party
Chairman of the Belarusian Popular Front
Leader of the Movement For Freedom