Belarus remains the last dictatorship of Europe. Since Summer 2020 there have been ongoing political demonstrations and protests against President Alexander Lukashenko and the Belarusian government as a preamble and later on as a response to illegitimate presidential elections and falsified election results. Protesters have been detained and have been subjected to torture, sexual abuse and rape and several protesters are still reported as missing.
As recently as May 2021, there have been prominent human rights violations with the Belarusian journalist Roman Protasevich being kidnapped off of his flight from Greece into Lithuania and coerced into making a false confession regarding his involvement in anti-government protests. He and his girlfriend Sofia Sapega are still being held in Belarus.
The European Union of Jewish Students believes:
1. As part of EUJS’ ethos of standing up against human rights violations and of fostering a vibrant and democratic European community, for our Jewish students and beyond, the situation in Belarus cannot go unnoticed.
2. Build coalitions and establish partnerships with individuals and organisations across Belarus, Europe and internationally to effectively raise the profile and awareness of the violent persecution of protesters.
3. Encourage Member Organisations, NGOs, political groups, governments, and others to raise the profile of this issue and show solidarity with the democratic protest in Belarus.
4. Continue to work closely alongside Belarussian (Jewish) activists and organisations, take decisions in consultation with the local member organisations and take direction from such activists/organisations, where necessary.
Note: The Belarussian Union of Jewish Students was not consulted in the drafting or passing of this motion in any way, shape or form and did not participate in the EUJS General Assembly 2021.