Mon. Jan 30th, 2023

On Tuesday, MEPs and invited speakers will meet to discuss legal avenues for bringing to international justice the people responsible for severe human rights crimes.

This event, the third meeting of the European Parliament’s platform on the fight against impunity in Belarus, will focus on accountability for perpetrators and justice for victims. MEPs together with prominent members of Belarusian civil society and academia, as well as representatives of other EU institutions, will explore all options for the international community to react to ongoing events in Belarus, where a relentless state crackdown on dissenting voices has been ongoing since the fraudulent presidential elections in August 2020.

In particular, participants will examine the use of universal jurisdiction to investigate and prosecute crimes committed by the Belarusian regime, and the roles institutions such as the International Criminal Court and the International Court of Justice could play in the case of Belarus.

Prominent guest speakers

Invited guests expected to address MEPs are the following:

  • Alina Stefanovic, member of the Belarusian Association of Journalists (BAJ) and wife of the detained Vice-Chair of Viasna, Valentsin Stefanovic;
  • Mariana Katzarova, Coordinator, Examination of the human rights situation in Belarus, OHCHR;
  • Kate Vigneswaran, Senior Prosecutor, International Accountability Platform for Belarus;
  • Max du Plessis, Associate Professor of Law at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and Senior Research Associate at the International Crimes in Africa Programme at the Institute for Security Studies;
  • Kai Ambos, Judge, Kosovo Specialist Chambers;
  • Nick Grief, Emeritus Professor of Law, University of Kent;
  • Eugenia Andreyuk, human rights expert, World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT).

Here is the meeting agenda.

WHEN: Tuesday 30 November, 09.00 – 10.30 CET.

WHERE: Room 4Q1 in the European Parliament’s József Antall building in Brussels and remote participation.

You can follow the meeting live here (30.11.2021).

Background

Parliament’s platform on the fight against impunity in Belarus was launched on 26 March by Members on the Subcommittee on Human Rights, the Committee on Foreign Affairs and the delegations for relations with Belarus and the Euronest Parliamentary Assembly. It was set up with the aim to explore how the European Parliament can best support the democratic forces in Belarus and to assess options for the EU to react to the heinous crimes carried out by the Belarusian regime led by dictator Aliaksandr Lukashenka.

Practical information for journalists

Accredited journalists wishing to attend the meeting can do so. As of 3 November, all people entering Parliament’s buildings are requested to present a valid EU Digital COVID Certificate, including journalists. The EU Digital COVID Certificate proves that a person is either fully vaccinated, has immunity after having recovered from COVID-19 or can show a recent negative PCR test result. Both digital and paper formats of the EU Digital COVID Certificate or of a recognised equivalent certificate will be accepted.

A proof of a negative result of a PCR test carried out within the last 72 hours in Belgium, Luxembourg or France will also be accepted. Please note that the existing precautionary measures, including the compulsory wearing of a medical face mask and temperature checks at entrances, remain in place.

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