Day of Solidarity with Civil Society of Belarus

On August 4th Freedom House will celebrate the International Day of Solidarity with Civil Society and Human Rights Movement in Belarus. On this day, events commemorating the work of imprisoned human rights activist Ales Bialiatski and other Belarusian human rights defenders will take place in Russia, Ukraine, Lithuania, UK, Germany, Sweden, Czech Republic, Poland and other countries.

The Day of Solidarity marks the second anniversary of the arrest of the prominent Belarusian human rights defender Ales Bialiatski who, since the mid-1990’s, has risked his freedom and safety daily assisting Belarusian citizens whose civic rights and fundamental freedoms are brutally violated by the Lukashenka regime. Founder and president of the Human Rights Center Viasna and vice-president of the International Federation for Human Rights, Bialiatski was arrested on August 4, 2011 and consequently tried on trumped-up charges of tax evasion and sentenced to 4.5 years in a high security colony, confiscation of property and a heavy fine.

Eleven political prisoners, including Bialiatski, remain incarcerated in Belarus in terrible prison conditions where they  face coercion and unfair treatment. Civic and political activists are arrested and fined regularly on fabricated charges for speaking against the government.

Freedom House is honored to participate in the Day of Solidarity campaign, initiated by the Committee on International Control over the Human Rights Situation in Belarus, and commends the resilience of Belarusian men and women who stand strong against government impunity and work hard in a prohibitively hostile political and legal environment to advance the right of every individual to be free.

Ales Bialiatski’s wife, Natallia Pinchuk, honored Freedom House by giving an interview to talk about Ales and other political prisoners in Belarus. Watch the video below for a truly beautiful message of hope:


WATCH: An interview with Natallia Pinchuk: