The Secretary General of the 47-nation Council of Europe, Marija Pejčinović Burić, has made the following statement concerning Belarus:
“The Council of Europe is gravely concerned about the latest threats to human rights in Belarus. The reported harassment and persecution of members of the Coordination Council is extremely worrying, as are the renewed arrests of the representatives of civil society and simple participants of manifestations. The mass intimidation of citizens by government agents or other actors is totally unacceptable and must stop. Continuation of such illegal practices presents a clear risk of aggravation of the already difficult situation with unforeseeable consequences. There is a danger that Belarus will drift towards a state of lawlessness and political persecution”.
“On behalf of the Council of Europe, I call on the leadership of Belarus to put an end to these repressive developments. There is no other way than to engage in fair and open dialogue with the civil society in view of preparing and conducting necessary reforms with no delay. The Council of Europe remains ready to offer its assistance in this respect.”