Statement by Mr Bogdan KLICH, MEP on behalf of the delegation for relations with Belarus on 26 October 2005

Strasbourg, 26 October 2005

by Mr Bodgan KLICH,
Member of the European Parliament
on behalf of the Delegation for relations with Belarus

It is essential for the European Parliament to take an active role in supporting all democratic forces in Belarus. Especially during the pre-election phase, the democratic opposition needs not only all the support we can muster, but also maximum media coverage and international interest and support which is vital to ensure the safety of all the opposition politicians.

At today's meeting the delegation exchanged views on the situation of the opposition with Mr Anatol LYABEDZKA, Chairman of the United Civic party and Mr Vincuk VIACORKA, Chairman of the Belarusian Popular Front.

The human rights of political prisoners in Belarus must also be protected, including the right to health care. The delegation is concerned about the health of Mikhal MARYNICH, former Minister and ambassador who is suffering from the effects of a stroke and of Valery LEVANEUSKI who is in need of treatment
following his hunger strike, among many others.

Therefore, the European Parliament, in cooperation with the European Commission and Council, should hold a Public Hearing on the situation in Belarus as soon as possible.

Such a meeting would serve to help coordinate and unite European efforts towards free and fair elections and greater human rights in Belarus.