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Statement by Minister of State for European Affairs, Thomas Byrne T.D. on Belarus

Ireland condemns the continued use of state violence against the Belarusian people in the strongest possible terms. The heavy-handed and wholly unjustifiable actions of the Belarusian authorities led to further loss of life last week and we call on them to stop the brutality immediately. We also call for an end to mass and indiscriminate detentions of peaceful protesters, including children, simply for defending their fundamental human rights.

Ireland is deeply troubled by threats made by the Belarusian authorities to take away the children of parents who protest. We share the concerns of UN Special Rapporteurs who have highlighted continued violations of children’s rights and the persecution of female human rights defenders in the country.

I urge the Belarusian authorities to end the repression of their citizens, to engage in a broad-based and inclusive national dialogue, and to seek a peaceful and democratic resolution of the current crisis. The people of Belarus alone hold the right to determine the future of their country and a prosperous Belarus is only possible with their consent. 

 

ENDS

PRESS OFFICE

17 NOVEMBER 2020

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