Standing for Belarus, its democracy and its peace: an ALDA and EPD joint statement
In the past week, we have all born testimony to the events following the August 9th elections in Belarus and the widespread belief that they lacked transparency, as just as widespread mass protests ensued in various forms and ways and met controversial reactions by the government and the local police.
In virtue of its mission in Europe and the European neighbourhood and of its direct involvement in the country, ALDA - the European Association for Local Democracy would like to express its condemnation of the violent crackdown on peaceful demonstrations: violence should never be the answer to the peaceful exercise of universal human rights such as freedom of thought and freedom of speech, nor should it be the response to any citizen behaviour when other non-violent measures are possible that are in line with the respect of human dignity and rights. In particular, we call for Belarus officials to remember and respect the Council of Europe principles and human rights charter which Belarus partially ratified.
On a related note, ALDA joins the Belarusian people in asking for clarifications with regards to the doubts on the correctness of the elections. With over a decade of activity in the country, the Association will continue to support Belarus and its people in the process of democratization, and to help local communities and grassroots civil society organisations to grow and flourish to this end. In its upcoming activities, ALDA in Belarus will keep aiming to solve pressing issues concerning citizens’ participation in decision-making at the local level and dialogue between CSOs and local authorities.
In the meantime, we call for Belarusian authorities to do all that is in their power to prevent further violence and breeches of human rights in the country, while also being transparent about the elections process and outcomes.
We strongly believe that the present and future of Europe goes much beyond the mere borders of the current EU member States. We stand for Belarus and its democracy!
The ALDA Governing Board and Alda Secretary General Antonella Valmorbida
- Find the ALDA Statement in PDF format here
- Read the Statement by the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum: click here
- Read the Joint Statement with the European Partnership for Democracy (EPD) ALDA is part of: click here.