2009 12/02
Leanid Sudalenka

Leanid Sudalenka

‘The difference between our nations is that in your country it is the people who rule, while in our country it is the law that rules.’ (Sir W.Churchill to J.Stalin)

At a special press-conference on 5 February in Minsk, the Prosecutor General Piotr Miklashevich made a shocking statement: ‘The Constitutional Court does not find any violations of the constitutional rights of Belarusian citizens in the compulsory fingerprinting campaign.’

In my opinion, the statement is a portent of perilous trends in the Belarusian judicial system. The civil servant duty-bound to secure the constitutional rights and freedoms of people sacrifices legality to political expediency. It is not that Belarus so far lacks the laws providing for compulsory fingerprinting for its citizens. That is not the point.

When similar statements are made by head of the supreme judicial body, any acquittal or verdict in favour of the opponents of the state will be an exception – not a legal one but an arbitrary decision by the court. Moreover, the court does not need any direct instructions. Judges are sensible people and they surely know how to ‘love their country.’

I also love and respect my country, but I, and the majority of our citizens alike, want this love and respect to be mutual.

Leanid Sudalenka,

Chair of the Legal Initiative Republican Public Association

Source: www.odsgomel.org

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