Belarusian legislation college students enrolled at European Humanities College are submitting studies with JURIST on present circumstances in Belarus underneath the constitutionally-disputed presidency of Alexander Lukashenka. Right here, one among them discusses new Prison Code provisions explicitly authorizing Belarusian officers and troopers to be put to dying for committing “treason to the state”. For privateness and safety causes, we’re withholding the identify of the correspondent submitting this report. The textual content has solely been evenly edited to respect the creator’s voice.
I’ve already written that the Belarusian regime has expanded the listing of offenses for which an individual might be sentenced to dying. You may learn that dispatch here. It appeared that these have been the final amendments to the legislation that might be anticipated. However on December 7 the Parliament of the Republic of Belarus accredited amendments to the Prison Code. Certainly one of these modifications is a brand new norm, in accordance with which it’s potential to use the dying penalty to an official or a soldier for treason to the state.
In keeping with the official assertion of the Parliament:
The aim of getting ready the draft invoice is to take proactive measures for the fee of extremist (terrorist) crimes by adjusting the Prison and Prison Process Codes of the Republic of Belarus.
With a purpose to have a deterrent impact on harmful components, in addition to to exhibit a resolute combat towards treason to the State, the draft invoice proposes amendments to the sanction of half 2 of Article 356 of the Prison Code, offering for the opportunity of making use of an distinctive penalty within the type of the dying penalty for treason dedicated by an official holding a public place or an individual who’s topic to the standing of a serviceman.
Within the Prison Code of the Republic of Belarus, treason to the state is the issuance to a international state, worldwide or international group or their representatives of state secrets and techniques of the Republic of Belarus, in addition to info constituting state secrets and techniques of different states transferred to the Republic of Belarus in accordance with the laws of the Republic of Belarus, or espionage, or defection to the enemy throughout warfare or armed battle, or different help to a international state, worldwide or international group or their representatives in finishing up actions, geared toward harming the nationwide safety of the Republic of Belarus, deliberately dedicated by a citizen of the Republic of Belarus (treason to the state).
“Treason to the state” is a particularly broad idea, underneath which completely any exercise of opposition individuals can fall. Thus, the Lukashenka regime goes to excessive measures to guard itself.
And don’t overlook in regards to the Ukrainian context right here. If Belarus turns into immediately concerned in Russia’s warfare towards Ukraine, any Belarusian navy who defect to the Ukrainian aspect and refused to combat might be sentenced to dying upon returning to Belarus.
Along with this info, I wish to cite some statistics on the dying penalty in Belarus:
Belarus is the one nation in Europe the place the dying penalty is utilized. Using the dying penalty is repeatedly criticized by the European Union and different worldwide organizations.
Alexander Lukashenka brazenly helps capital punishment as a “deterrent issue”. As a result of absence of a moratorium on the dying penalty, Belarus just isn’t a member of the Council of Europe, and due to this fact residents of the nation can’t complain to the European Court docket of Human Rights.
Over the past decade, wherever from 2 to 9 individuals are sentenced to dying yearly. Nonetheless the dying penalty might not be imposed on: individuals who’ve dedicated crimes underneath the age of eighteen; girls; males who’ve reached sixty-five years by the day of the decision.
A convicted particular person can ask for clemency, i.e., the dying penalty might be commuted to life imprisonment, however just one particular person is understood to have been pardoned throughout all of the years of Lukashenka’s regime.
The dying penalty in Belarus is historically shrouded in a veil of thriller. The physique of the executed particular person just isn’t given to the household for burial, the place of his burial just isn’t reported. This apply was acknowledged by the UN Human Rights Committee as inhumane in relation to the relations of these executed again in 2003. The Committee demanded that the nation remove violations. Nonetheless, Belarus ignored its obligations.
In keeping with info supplied by the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Belarus, 326 individuals have been sentenced to dying in Belarus from 1990 to 2011.