2013 26/08

She spent years of struggle and lost her health. The Human Rights Commission recognized that Belarus has violated rights of the citizen of Poland Volha Pichuhina.

Committee recognized violation of paragraph 3 of Article 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights – the right to be brought promptly before a judge or other officer authorized by law to exercise judicial power and be entitled to trial within a reasonable time or to release. Belarus was advised not to repeat such mistakes and to right a wrong.

According to human rights activist Raman Kisliak, Volha Pichuhina’s complaint concerned the circumstances of the incident, which happened in 2002, when a Polish citizen was detained in the Belarusian border while returning from Moscow to Warsaw. The reason for the arrest was that Pichuhina has not declared USD 50.000, as she has done it in the Russian capital and had an authorized banking document. Despite this fact, the Belarusian customs arrested currency (and later withdrew it), and Volha Pichuhina herself was placed first in the pre-trial detention center, and after – in a detention center, where she had a micro stroke. As a result, the court on this case took place only 11 days after Pichuhina’s arrest.

According Kisliak, in her complaint the Polish citizen noted that she was not brought to court for a hearing immediately after her arrest, as required by paragraph 3 of Article 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. “Within 48 hours after the citizen accused, he/she must be brought to court, and the person there decides if a detainee is to be detained, released on bail or on other obligation under the pre-trial”, – said Raman Kisliak.

Attempts of Volha Pichuhina to compensate moral injury through Belarusian courts of different instances were rejected, whereupon she appealed to the Human Rights Commission of the United Nations.

Quoting Belarusian Radio Racyja
Prepared by Ales LETA
Belarusian Legal Portal
Photo by Ales Lapitski

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