2008 18/11

Alaksiej LapickiAliaksei Lapitski
As said to the BelaPAN by Homel human rights activist Leanid Sudalenka, all three answers to the addresses concerning the implementations of the opinions of the UN Human Rights Committee and renewal of the legal status of the ‘Civil initiatives’ in Homel, received from different state instances of Belarus are negative. In particular, in the letter signed by the first deputy minister of foreign affairs Ihar Petryshenka it is said:
- the opinions of the Human Rights Committee are advisory and the facultative protocol does not impose obligations concerning implementation of the committee’s recommendations’.

- At the same time, the official answers that ‘the constitutional right to apply to international organizations with the aim to protect one’s rights’ is not violated.

It’s no use commenting the ‘novelties’ in the field of international legislations that are created by the ‘thought factory’ in the Belarusian MFA now. It seems that their production is not occasional, but well thought over and sanctioned by the top of the ‘vertical’…

That’s why such answers, especially if they are given by the Belarusian MFA, are quite eloquent. They reflect the real NEGATIVE attitude of the Belarusian authorities to the international legal norms in the field of civil and political rights, to the very notion of such rights and to the necessity of obligatory and unconditioned implementation of the appropriate international treaties, ratified by the Republic of Belarus in this field.

From this position there ensues disrespect to the international legal standards, which is well-known to all activists of the civil society and even ordinary electors. These standards contradict to the conceptions of the administration of the ‘power vertical’ – they do not correspond to the ‘right democracy’ and the ‘internal rules’ of Belarus which are allegedly based on some other, peculiarly Belarusian ‘own traditions and national-psychological characteristics of Belarusians’, different from European ones (!)

A similar formulation was used by an official of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in his interview to the Belarusian TV at the end of the international summit in Minsk. This official evidently tried to voice the position of the country authorities concerning the ‘preliminary conditions’ put by the West for continuation of normalization and extension of mutual contacts, and contractual relations in different fields of international cooperation…

Even children (and not only those from Zhodzina) know that there cannot be any international relations without appropriate treaties, and partners either implement the treaties and have predictably high authority and positive image, or do not implement them and diplomatic RECOMMENDATIONS of quasi-judicial international institutions, and don’t have enough authority for getting considerable investments, gains and, as a result, appropriate life standards.

It is evident that good image is worth much. A democratic country, respecting itself, its obligations on treaties and the rights of its citizens … – really becomes a WEALTHY and BLOOMING country, because, as a Belarusian proverb goes, one needs not to have 100 RUBLES, but 100 FRIENDS! This rule also works 100% in the international legal field, as a golden principle, a well-known axiom.

That’s why the MFA know well enough that the demands of the European Union or the US (and other authoritative subjects of international interaction) for Belarus as a subject of international relations – ARE DEMANDS TO UNCONDITIONALLY IMPLEMENTAT THE UNIVERSALLY ACCEPTED PRINCIPLES AND STANDARDS OF LAW – including the obligations on the aforementioned treaties.

And there are no additional ‘preliminary conditions’, as these are the legal standards, the provisions of the international legislation, which Belarus MUST implement UNCONDITIONALLY in order to be perceived as a serious, predictable and respectable partner by important and civilized international subjects (or solid international investors).

That’s why the lawsuit of Uladzimir Katsora (Homel) to the court concerning such an answer of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the expressed in such a way open non-recognition of the powers of the UN Human Rights Committee by the Belarusian authorities is a completely logical and adequate step in the strategy of effective human rights protection in our conditions.

Any of similar evidently ARBITRARY and INADMISSIBLE interpretations of the legal norms (not only by the MFA, but also by other subjects of the law in Belarus) must immediately receive qualified legal evaluation and (if necessary) be stopped by the force of law on the expert level, as they are doing much harm to the society, citizens as the main bearers of rights and obligations in the state, image and authority of the country in the world.

That’s why, starting of such a court case and its reduction (if necessary) to the UN HUMAN RIGHTS COMMITTEE* in Geneva… – would be a very adequate answer to such DEMONSTRATIVE DISRESPECTFUL non-implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights by the ruling regime of the Republic of Belarus, and to the absolutely IRRESPONSIBLE attitude to the official conclusions and opinions of the UN HRC on concrete facts of violation of the international standards in the field of human rights and liberties.

Licviny-INFA,
Zhodzina

* – UN Human Rights Committee (Geneva) – was established for regulation of such collisions and fostering the implementation of international norms in the national legislations and court practices of the member countries of the abovementioned international treaty in the field of human rights. As Belarus is not a member of the Council of Europe, at present the UN HMR is the only international juridical, quasi-judicial institution and instrument which is able to issue highly authoritative (and obligatory for Belarus) expert opinions and conclusions on facts of violation by it its treaty undertakings in the field of human rights…

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