Belarus lawyers prevented from carrying out their professional duties
Lawyers for Lawyers, together with the Law Society of England and Wales and the Institute for the Rule of Law of the International Association of Lawyers (UIA-IROL), has written a letter to the authorities in Belarus regarding threats to the independence of the legal profession and access to justice in the aftermath of the recent elections in Belarus.
On 9 August 2020, the presidential elections in Belarus took place. In the aftermath of these elections, over 6000 citizens of Belarus have been arrested and detained for taking part in largely peaceful protests against the election results or by voicing criticism of the Government of Belarus. It has been reported that there has been an excessive use of force by state authorities against protesters and that many of those arrested are facing ill-treatment and poor conditions in detention.
It was reported that many of those arrested and detained have not had access to a legal representative, nor a legal representative of their own choosing. Where they have been able to meet with a lawyer, it has been alleged that the principle of lawyer-client confidentiality has not been respected. In addition, lawyers have not been granted access to pertinent information to adequately represent and defend the rights of their clients.
It has also been reported that lawyers are being prevented from carrying out their professional duties by law enforcement officers and other state agents and have been harassed, which directly threatens the independence of the legal profession in Belarus. Therefore, access to justice for all citizens in Belarus has been severely curtailed.
Lawyers for Lawyers, the Law Society of England and Wales and UIA-IROL urged the relevant Belarusian authorities to, amongst other things, ensure that all those arrested have access to a lawyer of their own choosing and that lawyers can carry out their professional duties freely and without undue external interference, hindrance or intimidation.
View the full letter here.
Meer nieuws uit Belarus
Possible revocation of license Aliaksandr Pylchanka
Lawyers for Lawyers was informed that the Qualification Commission for legal practice in the Republic of Belarus has scheduled a meeting for 15 October 2020 to consider revoking the license to practice law of lawyer Aliaksandr Pylchanka. Mr. Pylchanka, theLees verder
Joint letter on the arrest and detention of Maksim Znak and Illia Salei
In a joint letter, Lawyers for Lawyers and the Law Society of England and Wales have expressed concern about the arrest and detention of lawyers Maksim Znak and Illia Salei in the Republic of Belarus. According to our information, MaksimLees verder
Joint statement in connection with the detention of Belarusian lawyers Ilya Salei and Maksim Znak
Lawyers for Lawyers has signed a joint statement alongside 63 other signatories, expressing concern about the detention of lawyers Ilya Salei and Maksim Znak. In the statement, Lawyers for Lawyers and the signatories urge the Belarusian authorities to immediately releaseLees verder
Proces tegen Oleg Volchek
UPDATE: During a hearing on 4 July 2017, the Frunzensky District Court of Minsk changed Oleg Volchek’s sentence of 13 days imprisonment to a fine of 575 Belarusian Rubbles (approximately €260). Lawyers for Lawyers is concerned about the trial againstLees verder