Updated at 23:25,12-02-2019

Congressman Smith: The Hague court should bring a charge against Lukashenko

Christopher Smith, the head of the US Helsinki Commission, held a press conference in Washington on occasion of one year anniversary of the Belarusian elections.

As Radio Liberty reports, congressman Christopher Smith expressed his opinion regarding American sanctions against the Belarusian regime.

They work because they support pressure, he noted. The politician said a plant can grow up through concrete if it applies persistent pressure, but if pressure weakens or if it is applied only from time to time, dictatorship can live forever. All EU members and everyone worrying about human rights should join the US, Smith noted.

He told journalists payback time would come for Alyaksandr Lukashenka. He said letters would soon be sent to the International Criminal Court expressing a strong believe that the International Criminal Court should indict Alyaksandr Lukashenka.

The congressman said the US and the EU should cooperate more on the Belarusian issue. He noted the EU had imposed sanctions and restricted entry to some persons, but more measures should be taken. The US continues to call on the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly to deliver a stronger and more decisive signal to the country. Smith noted he was among those supposing not to accept post-Soviet Belarus in the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly unless the country fulfills certain obligations and even had blocked Belarus’s joining the assembly. The Parliamentary Assembly yielded and Belarus became a member, but the situation in the country did not improve, but deteriorated.

Iryna Krasouskaya, whose husband, businessman and public figure Anatoly Krasouski, was abducted in Belarus in 1999, called on the American community to save her friends, Belarusian political prisoners.

"I’ve come here to save the lives of my friends: Sannikov, Dashkevich, Bandarenka, Statkevich, Byalyatski, Sevyarynets and other people imprisoned after the December 19 demonstration. I call on the government of the United States, NGOs, journalists and ordinary Americans make everything possible to save these people. Please, do not allow Lukashenka to commit a killing, as it happened in 1999, I mean political abductions and extrajudicial executions of his opponents", Krasouskaya said.