Lithuania offers human rights recommendations to Belarus
On 2 November, the Permanent Representative of Lithuania Ambassador Andrius Krivas took the floor at the 36th session of the Working Group of Universal Periodic Review (UPR) to address the human rights situation in Belarus.
Lithuania expressed its deep concern about grave deterioration of human rights situation in Belarus in the context of the August presidential elections marred by massive fraud.
Lithuania recommended Belarus to immediately cease police violence against peaceful protesters and journalists, including arbitrary detention, arbitrary deprivation of liberty and torture, to release immediately and unconditionally all political prisoners, including former presidential candidates, their supporters and those detained during post-electoral protests, and to refrain from judicial harassment and reprisals, and to ensure prompt independent investigation of all allegations of torture and bring perpetrators to account.
“We urge Belarus to cooperate with the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights situation in Belarus by granting her free, full and unhindered access”, - said the Ambassador.
Lithuania also recommended Belarus to engage in genuine dialog with civil society represented by the Coordination Council, in order to hold free and fair presidential elections in presence of international observers.
The Universal Periodic Review is a human rights mechanism employed since 2008. The UPR assesses the human rights situation in each individual country and provides recommendations for improvements. At the end of each UPR cycle, UN Members produce reports about the implementation of the adopted recommendations and overall progress in the area of human rights. Countries undergo the UPR every five years. Lithuania had its reviews in 2011 and 2017. The third-cycle review will take place in January 2022.