Report on Belarus: The Crisis of the Legal Profession Continued Repressions 2022 – 2023
7 February 2024

Report on Belarus: The Crisis of the Legal Profession Continued Repressions 2022 – 2023


In cooperation with the American Bar Association (ABA) and the International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute (IBAHRI), the Center for Constitutionalism and Human Rights, Right to Defense, and Lawyers for Lawyers have prepared this report to summarize the ongoing worrying trend of suppression of the legal profession and individual lawyers in Belarus.

It is a follow-up to our 2022 report titled “The Continuous Crackdown on the Legal Profession in Belarus” (“2022 Belarus Report”). It outlines the ongoing crisis within the legal system, marked by a “legal default” where the state fails to uphold the rule of law, human rights, and justice administration. 

The report continues to monitor the situation of lawyers and the legal profession in Belarus in the period after the 2020 presidential elections, which was marked by unprecedented repressions by the regime against civil society. The report reveals systematic violations against civil society members, including lawyers, with significant repercussions for the right to defense, freedom of expression, and fair trial. Despite these challenges, the report highlights the resilience of lawyers defending human rights and pushing for legal reforms to restore justice and professional independence in Belarus. 

The authors of the report urge the government of Belarus to take immediate actions to support Belarusian lawyers: release those imprisoned, guarantee the physical safety and security of lawyers, cease harassment, allow them to work without fear, reinstate those disbarred since 2020, and ensure their professional independence through appropriate legislation and a self-regulatory professional association of lawyers.

Read the full report here.

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