2009 13/03

Бенита Ферреро-ВальднерBenita Ferrero-Waldner explained representatives of the Belarusian opposition at a meeting in Strasbourg why her visit to Belarus had been postponed.

The European Commissioner for external Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy Benita Ferrero-Waldner met with head of the United Civil Party (UCP) Anatol Lyabedzka and politician Alyaksandr Kazulin in Strasbourg on March 11 and noted that Europe couldn’t play with fundamental values of the European Union.

“We spoke about human rights in Belarus. Ferrero-Waldner pointed out that her visit had been postponed because some questions, she was going to discuss with official Minsk, must be worked out,” Lyabedzka told in an interview to BelaPAN.

According to him, Ferrero-Waldner is going to continue consultations to work out a Europe’s position towards the Belarusian authorities.

A visit of the European commissioner to Minsk, scheduled for March 12–13, was postponed until the middle of April.

New political prisoners have appeared in Belarus for the last month: leaders of the entrepreneurs’ movement Mikalai Autukhovich, Yury Lyavonau, and Uladzimir Asipenka, and “Young Front” activist Artsyom Dubski, who is serving punishment for participation in a demonstration of entrepreneurs last year.

Other young people, convicted in this case – Maksim Dashuk, Alyaksandr Charnyshou, Tatsyana Tsishkevich, Alyaksandr Barazenka, Paval Vinahradau, Mikhail Subach, Alyaksei Bondar, Mikhauil Kryvau, Mikhali Pashkevich, Alyaksandr Straltsou – are under threat of imprisonment, too.

Human rights activist Yana Palyakova, sentenced to 2.5 years of restraint of liberty, committed suicide.

Moreover, the opposition doesn’t have access to state media, and most independent newspapers don’t have an opportunity to be printed and distributed on the territory of Belarus.

Source: www.charter97.org

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