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Statement by Secretary General
Situation in Belarus

Council of Europe Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić has made the following statement:

“I strongly condemn the latest criminal sentences in absentia against a group of Belarusian experts, journalists and opposition politicians. Their collective trial on unsubstantiated and spurious charges was conducted in manifest contempt of due process and serves as yet another stark reminder of the systematic and widespread human rights violations stemming from the political repressions in the country.

“Among those arbitrarily sentenced are partners of our organisation who share a tireless commitment to our common European values of human rights, rule of law and democracy. It is outrageous that Belarusians continue to be unjustly prosecuted and sentenced for peacefully and bravely exercising their rights and even for merely exercising their professional activities.

“The Council of Europe stands in full solidarity with all political prisoners in Belarus. They must be immediately and unconditionally released and accountability for the suffering inflicted on them must be ensured in line with international law.

“The Council of Europe will continue to work closely with Belarusian democratic forces, civil society and independent media and all those who aspire to a free and democratic Belarus.”

Secretary General Strasbourg 3 July 2024
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