Human rights activists take part in meeting with PACE delegation
On August 9, the delegation of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, including the Special Rapporteur on Belarus Andrea Rigoni, met with representatives of the Belarusian civil society.
The meeting was attended by political analyst Valery Karbalevich, director of the Society of Comparative Legal Studies Siarhei Alfer, an analyst of the Belarusian Institute for Strategic Studies (BISS) Alena Artsiomenka and representatives of the campaign "Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections" Aleh Hulak (BHC) and Valiantsin Stefanovich (Human Rights Center “Viasna”).
As explained by Valiantsin Stefanovich, the meeting participants discussed the situation of human rights and civil society in Belarus, as well as the social and political background of the current parliamentary elections. In addition, representatives of the independent observation campaign touched upon certain aspects of the election phases, which have already been completed.
“It is important that the international community had information about what is happening in Belarus from a variety of sources. For our campaign, it is even more important to share with the international election observers our conclusions, estimates and projections,” said Viasna’s activist.
The pre-electoral mission of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe arrived in Belarus on August 9. The mission is headed by the Austrian Gisela Wurm. It includes representatives of Norway, Montenegro, Armenia, France, Poland and Italy, among them the PACE Rapporteur on Belarus Andrea Rigoni. As part of their brief visit, the PACE observers have met with representatives of the Central Election Commission, mass media, civil society and diplomats to assess the progress of the election campaign and the political climate in the country ahead of the vote to be held on September 11.
The campaign "Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections" is a non-partisan initiative and does not intend to support political parties and politicians. The entire election process is assessed solely on the basis of the principles of free, democratic and transparent elections, which can enable the people of Belarus to fully exercise their constitutional right to participate in the government of the country.