“European Belarus” activist arrested for calling to boycott and protest against falsification

The Leninski district court of Minsk sentenced activist of the civil campaign “European Belarus” Paval Luksha to ten days of arrest for distribution of “Vybor” newspaper calling to boycott the oncoming “parliamentary election” and protest against possible rigging of the “election” results.

Judge Mikhail Khomich found Paval Luksha guilty of violation article 23.34 of the Code of Administrative Offences (calling to take part in unauthorised action). Most articles in “Vybor” covered the theme of boycotting the oncoming “parliamentary election”. Among others an article Your Voice Can Be Heard Only at Square calling to come to October (Kastrychnitskaya) square in Minsk at 8.00 pm 28 September if the results of the “election” are rigged.

Paval Luksha was detained when he was distributing “Vybor” newspaper in Rokoccovski Avenue in Minsk on 18 August. He was set free that time. But today morning, at 7.30, he was arrested by militia officers at the entrance to Kirau machine building plant, where the “European Belarus” activist works as a lath operator.

It should be reminded that Mikalai Lazavik, secretary of the Central Commission for Elections and National Referendums, said yesterday “agitation for boycott of election is not forbidden” in Belarus.

“I saw stickers calling to boycott the “parliamentary election”. Let them agitate,” Lazavik said.

It is obvious that words of the CEC secretary were just words. Moreover, the decision of the Belarusian court contradicts the opinion of Council of Europe Secretary General Terry Davis, who said:

“Lukashenka can’t understand that citizens of any country, considered democratic, have the right to protest against rigged election results.”