The International Committee for the Investigation of Torture in Belarus

The International Committee for the Investigation
of Torture in Belarus was created as a reaction of
Belarusian and foreign human rights organizations
to torture and brutality towards civilians after the
presidential elections on August 9, 2020.

The International Committee for the Investigation of Torture in Belarus has provided the first interim report: on the state's reaction and measures taken to investigate the mass torture of August 9-13, 2020

 Summary


1. Prohibition of torture is one of the few absolute and inalienable human 
rights. The Republic of Belarus has ratified the International Covenant 
on Civil and Political Rights and the Convention against Torture and 
Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment. In this 
connection, it is obliged to ensure the protection of any person from 
torture and to ensure prompt and impartial investigation of torture and 
other cruel treatment.
2. During four days from August 9 to 13, 2020, according to official data, 
more than 7000 people were detained. As a result of the actions of law 
enforcement agencies, the death of at least four people was recorded, 
thousands of detainees received physical and psychological trauma 
and had to undergo medical treatment, physical and psychological 
rehabilitation. Such large-scale manifestations of power abuse due 
to its extremely high social danger are considered by the criminal law 
not as ordinary professional misconduct, but as a particularly grave 
crime against the safety of mankind, provided for in Art. 128 of the 
Criminal Code of the Republic of Belarus.
3. Neither the current President, nor the General Prosecutor’s Office, nor 
the Ministry of the Interior have issued a single public and unequivocal 
statement condemning the use of all forms of torture, nor have they 
issued a clear warning that any person involved in such actions will 
bear responsibility according to the Criminal Code.
4. As  of  October  5,  2020,  neither  the  Investigative  Committee  nor 
the interviewed applicants have any updates about the initiation of 
criminal cases on the facts of torture, as well as criminal cases on 
the facts of the death of people during the protests. Currently, the 
ongoing checks do not meet the standards for effective investigation 
of allegations of torture in terms of speed, thoroughness, impartiality, 
victims’ access to investigation and transparency.

Download the report in format .PDF
 
On the state's reaction on torures report

 

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