In the period of 5 to 7 September, three Belarusian public figures, Irina Sukhiy, Andrei Yahorau and Stanislava Husakova, members of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum, were arrested.

Protest Action in front of the Belarusian Embassy in support of the 3 Arrested Civil Society Partners in Belarus

Discussing this issue, the EaP CSF Steering Committee issued a statement proposing to carry out protests in the EaP states in defense of arrested Belarusian colleagues.

Today, on 10 September, a protest action was held in front of the Embassy of Belarus in Armenia with the participation of a number of civil society organizations.

“Our arrested Belarusian partners have always been distinguished with their exceptional solidarity with the Armenian counterparts. It is very possible that we are active and united in our actions of solidarity. At the same time, we call for an immediate end to violence and repression against civil society, young people and dissidents by Belarusian law enforcement agencies, and urge the Belarusian Government to engage in a constructive dialogue with Svetlana Tikhanovskayaits, leader of the opposition and her representatives.

“The results of the presidential election of the Republic of Belarus on 9 August, 2020 have been declared invalid by many state institutions, including the European Union, due to numerous violations and falsifications,” the statement said.

“Our demand is that the Belarusian authorities immediately release the citizens who are exercising their freedom of assembly, especially our partners who are members of the civil society forum. If they come out of the Embassy and listen to us, we will definitely pass our word, if not, we will end with a silent action. We have issued and disseminated a statement calling on both the international community to support us in this matter and the government of our own countries to be proactive and demand the release of our partners,” Ms Lusine Hakobyan, Coordinator of the National Platform of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum, President of “Europe in Law Association” NGO said. According to her, these days everything depends on the people of Belarus and we urge our partners to be stable and strong, to know that the Armenian people and civil society are by their side.

According to Mr. Movses Aristakesyan, President of the “Center for Economic Rights” and a member of the Governing Board of the CSO Anti-Corruption Coalition Armenia, a similar process of the Velvet Revolution of Armenia is taking place in Belarus and the people are unable to maintain their tolerance for the presence of the leader who has ruled the country for 26 years. Aristakesyan does not expect any response from the Embassy of Belarus․ “The Embassy is located in a place far from the city, it does not even want to communicate with the civilized world.”

“By participating in the silent action, we also express our solidarity with our colleagues who have been arrested in Belarus. I believe that all representatives of civil society should be released immediately, and the main subject of dispute resolution issue in Belarus is the citizen of Belarus, who is endowed with sovereignty. I hope they will be able to solve the problems of their country,” Mr. Karen Zadoyan, President of the Armenian Lawyers’ Association NGO, Coordinator of the Constructive Dialogue Network of Armenian CSOs said.