2010 29/08


Valia Layeuskaya reports in her article “Homiel “For Belarus without Lukashenka” (Radio Racyja) about a successful out-of-court defense of the right to freedom of expression.

Indeed it appeared that it’s not forbidden to wear a T-shirt with the print “For Belarus without Lukashenka” in Homiel. Thus, the Deputy Chief of the Central Regional Department of Internal Affairs, militia lieutenant colonel Siarhey Yafimenka came to this conclusion after studying the protocol of administrative violation against public activist Uladzimier Niapomniashchykh.
As a decree about cancellation of the administrative case says that there are no components of administrative violation in the activist’s actions.

Uladzimier Niapomniashchykh says that he was arrested on July 27, on the Belarus’s Independence Day because of the print on his T-shirt which said “For Belarus without Lukashenka”. Mr. Niapomniashchykh, a retired militia officer, was taken to the Central Regional Department of Internal Affairs and photographed from the two sides. Later preventive measures chief inspector of Homiel Central Regional Department of Internal Affairs major Aliaksandr Shukiel wrote a report.

-Militia men found fault with my T-shirt with prints “For Belarus without Lukashenko” and “Enough, sick of him” on the back. I think that there are components of any crime in my actions, because the prints on my T-shirt are my public position towards the head of the country. That’s how I explained the situation during the arrest, – said Uladzimier Niapomniashchykh.
Homiel human rights activist Leanid Sudalienka who helped the public activist to defend from the accusation filed, is convined that every citizen has the right to freedom of expression.

-Article 33 of Belarusian constitution guarantees every citizen the freedom of opinion and their expression. Nobody can be forced to express opinion or deny it. The same right is described in article 19 of the Covenant on Civil and Political Rights ratified by our country.

– I think that militia officers issued from the law in this particular case, when they freed the public activist from administrative responsibility. This approach of militia make human rights defenders very glad, – stressed Leanid Sudalienka.

Quoting “Radio Racyja”
Prepared by Ales Leta,
Belarusian Legal Portal,

One thought on “In Homiel right to freedom of expression defended”

  1. Alaksiej says:

    I associate with my colleague’s opinion and agree that this case is a positive precedent which shows that in this particular case a large part was played by human rights argumentation and professional awareness and conscience of Homiel militia officers. It appears that there are some conscious officers left in Belarus. This gives hope that original functions of rights defending and court establishment will restore in the country and natural public and political initiatives will get free and all universally received standards of right described in the Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and enshrined in the Belarusian Constitution will be realized in practice.

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