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Life Under Attack: UN Special Rapporteur on Belarus probes state’s human rights record

Monash University 2 mins read

Monash University’s Eleos Justice will host a discussion with Anaïs Marin, the UN Special Rapporteur on Belarus to probe the realities and legal implications of various forms of state-sanctioned killing in Belarus.

 

Belarus is the only country in Europe that still implements the death penalty and has shown no sign of stopping with at least one execution, further death sentences, and the introduction of new capital offences in 2022/23. 

 

Marin will also touch on other human rights issues including deaths in custody and migrant deaths. In the past year alone, at least four individuals have died in the custody of Belarusian authorities, against a backdrop of unrelenting persecution of political dissidents and rights activists. 

 

In 2021, an influx of thousands of migrants and asylum seekers attempting to cross Belarus’ borders into Latvia, Lithuania and Poland gave rise to a humanitarian crisis allegedly orchestrated by the Belarusian government. As a result, more than 50 asylum seekers were confirmed as having died while trapped at the country’s borders with the EU.

 

Associate Professor Mai Sato, Eleos Justice’s inaugural director, welcomed the discussion with Ms Marin as an opportunity to confront the stark realities of state-sanctioned violence in Belarus and its wider implications globally. 

 

“The death penalty symbolises a state’s authority to wield lethal power over its citizens. By retaining the death penalty under law, states declare that some offenders must be eliminated, and acknowledge that killing human beings forms part of their justice system,” Associate Professor Sato said.

 

Anaïs Marin is the incumbent UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Belarus. She is an independent researcher based in Warsaw, Poland, and an associate fellow with the Russia and Eurasia programme at Chatham House, London, United Kingdom.

 

Eleos Justice carries out evidence-based research, teaching and advocacy on the death penalty and other forms of state-sanctioned killing.

 

The discussion will take place via webinar on Tuesday 23 April from 5:00pm to 6:00pm. Registration for the free event is available here

 

-    ENDS    - 

 

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For more Monash media stories, visit our news and events site: https://www.monash.edu/news

 

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