At UN Human Rights Council, Lithuania expresses concerns about human rights situation in Belarus
On 10 July, at the 44th session of the Human Rights Council, the Permanent Representative of Lithuania, Ambassador Andrius Krivas took the floor in the interactive dialogue with the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Belarus, Anaïs Marin.
Lithuania expressed great concerns over violations of the freedom of assembly and association and freedom of expression, condemned the violent and abusive approach of the Belarussian government towards independent journalists, bloggers, peaceful protesters and opposition activists, as well as the recent targeted persecution of presidential candidates. We urge Belarus to ensure integrity of the ongoing electoral process, and legitimacy of its outcomes.
These developments confirm the need for keeping the human rights situation in Belarus on the Council’s agenda. Therefore, in the current session of the Human Rights Council, the European Union presents a resolution to extend the mandate of the Special Rapporteur and urges the Government of Belarus to begin full cooperation with this mandate and grant it full access throughout the country.
The 44th session of the Human Rights Council is taking place from June 30 to July 17, 2020. The goal of the Geneva-based Human Rights Council is to promote universal respect for human rights and freedoms, react to the most urgent human rights violations and provide recommendations. Lithuania has presented its candidacy to the Human Rights Council for the term 2022-2024 and currently takes part in the work of the HRC as an observer.
On September 28, Lithuania, together with the co-chairs of the United Nations Group of Friends for the Protection of Journalists, France and Greece, released the Joint Statement on the situation of journalists in Belarus. The Joint Statement was supported by more than fifty United Nations Member States, and the European Union.
On 14 August, Minister of Foreign Affairs Linas Linkevičius took part in an extraordinary Foreign Affairs Council convened via a video conference to discuss the critical situation in Belarus and renewed tensions in the east of the Mediterranean.
The Foreign Ministers of Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden, in the context of the developments that are taking place in Belarus, express their grave concern about the violence against post-election demonstrations that have occurred in response to reports of widespread electoral fraud. We are very troubled by the reports of physical injuries inflicted on the demonstrators.