2016 07/06


On June 6 Baranavičy citizens appealed to the local executive committee with the appeal to amend the decision of Baranavičy city executive committee “On mass events in the city of Baranavičy”.

The concerned citizens write herein:

“For more than nine years the executive committee in Baranavičy hasn’t been permitting members of the democratic parties and public organizations to picket on various issues of public life. These restrictions do not contribute to social dialogue, make it impossible to exchange ideas, suggestions, there is no feedback from society and government.

The authorities do not want to hear anyone but themselves. This leads to a worsening of the economic situation of the country, an increase of unemployment, inflation, reduction of wages from the promised $ 1,000 to $ 320 and much less in smaller cities and regions, it became necessary to increase the retirement age, but it became harder to survive with such pension. For holding pickets without the permission of the court people are fined from 20 to 40-50 base amounts to replenish the weakening budget”.

Several weeks ago members of the Human Rights Centre “Viasna”, together with members of political parties, non-governmental organizations, community activists and other human rights activists held a round table on which they have discussed the problem of non-compliance of the decision of Baranavičy city executive committee mentioned above with Belarusian Constitution, current legislation and international treaties.

The round table participants said that in accordance with Art. 35 of the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus, as well as Art. 19 and 21 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,
freedom of assembly, meetings, street processions, demonstrations and pickets that do not violate the rule of law and the rights of other citizens of the Republic of Belarus,

is guaranteed by the state.

At the same time in the Decision № 3778 of December 29, 2014 by Baranavičy city executive committee the only a certain place for holding mass events (with the exception of street processions and demonstrations) is named the oldest recreation park on the Kamsamolskaya street (a free from trees playground along the Mickievič street).
In its responses to the appeals of citizens the executive committee refers to p. 1, Article 9 of the Law of the Republic of Belarus “On Mass Events in the Republic of Belarus”.

“Mass events can be held in any suitable for this purpose, except for the places referred to in the third part of this article”.

Round table participants ask the executive committee to follow the article that it referred to, as it says:
“The local executive and administrative bodies determine the permanent venues for public events, as well as the places where their conduct is not permitted, publishing this information in the media”.

The participants of the round table know not one, but many places in different parts of the city, where you can hold public events.

They are angry about the systematic refusals of the authorities:

“The authorities do not respect citizens if offer them a place in an abandoned old people park (in fact in the woods), far from people, where there are puddles of water when it rains, and snow in winter. But the main question is who these pickets will be for? For homeless dogs?”

The roundtable participants believe that the requirement of the executive committee about payment of services of public order, health services, cleaning of the territory after holding the mass action are illegal and contrary to the current legislation.

To implement the rights guaranteed by the Belarusian legislation, the roundtable participants demand to amend the decision of Baranavičy city executive committee of December 29, 2014 № 3778 “On mass events in the city of Baranavičy”, and in particular:

• to find other places in the city, the same for all applicants, which are suitable for public events both of the executive committee, Belarusian Youth Union and other social organizations, parties and citizens of the city;

• to abolish the oral requirement of a conclusion the agreements on the protection of public order and to fix this in a written form;

• to abolish the requirement of the conclusion of contracts for cleaning the territory and provision of medical care and appealing these contracts together with application for holding mass events.

Quoting spring96.org
Prepared by Ales LETA,
Belarusian Legal Portal
www.prava-by.info

On photos: Siarhiej Hoŭša – one of the people who demand to change the order of holding mass events in the city. Main photo: Radio Svaboda

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