"I understand now the public is shocked by this death sentence, but you need to look beyond and understand, that all Belarusian justice overthrown in such an abyss, that we'll need decades to get out from it", thus a philosopher and scholar Vladimir Matskevich commented on the death sentence of Dmitry Konovalov and Vladislav Kovalev passed on November 30 by the Supreme Court.
In an interview with UDF.BY the expert described the Belarusian juridical "outrage" and how to deal with it.
- Vladimir, what is your general attitude to this court decision and do you consider it just?
- From what I know, from what I've read and seen - the guilt is unproved. The court was biased, so there is every reason to doubt, that the sentence was imposed on those, who is really guilty of this terrorist act.
- Valery Kostka believes, that such a harsh sentence has further undermined confidence in the authorities and in Belarusian judiciary. Do you agree with this opinion?
- The presence of the death penalty in Belarus, and inaction of the authorities to execute this punishment in a civilized way, largely characterizes the state of our "justice". On November 30 this terrible sentence was passed, but for a whole year our country lives in conditions of the absence of fairness and justice as such. Repressions against participants in the events of 19 December, then the repressions inflicted on the advocacy, on human rights defenders. All this should be regarded as a whole. I understand now the public is shocked by this death sentence, but you need to look beyond and understand, that all Belarusian justice overthrown in such an abyss, that we'll need decades to get out from it.
- Quite a large-scale campaign to gather signatures against the death penalty of Konovalov and Kovalev was held via Internet. Can these signatures influence the decision of the president to pardon convicts?
- I think no. He has already got the bit between his teeth, and this sentence was passed directly by agreement with him, so it's unlikely the petition for a pardon will succeed.
- Oleg Volchek said today, the Supreme Court decision is the sentence upon the whole Belarusian society - for a silence, for a thoughtfulness. Is there a guilt of each of us in what has happened?
- This is not the sentence on society, this is the diagnosis. We are all guilty of the sentence was passed, we are all guilty of tolerating such "justice".
Is there anything can done now in regard to this sentence?
- We can hardly do something on one fact. Even on such a blatant as this death sentence. If we couldn't do anything for a year, then what to say about this case. In principle, there is a chance to change the situation, but in civil society should be a solidarity, and for the present we spend every effort to interfere with each other, to sort things out with each other and to decide who is right and who is wrong in some trifles. While in civil society there is no unity and harmony, we cannot stop this lawlessness.