"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed, but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." - Oscar Wilde

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

URGENT ACTION: Year's First Death Sentence in Belarus

A 21-year-old man, Siarhei Ivanou, has been sentenced to death in Belarus. He is the first person sentenced to death in the country this year.

View the full Urgent Action, including case information, addresses and sample messages, here.

Siarhei Ivanou, a 21-year-old man, was sentenced to death on 18 March by the Homel Regional Court for the murder of a 19-year-old woman in August 2013. The court had found him guilty of “committing murder with particular cruelty”, “hooliganism with the use of violence”, robbery and theft. According to the Investigative Committee, Siarhei Ivanou had been under the influence of alcohol and psychotropic drugs when he brutally beat and raped the woman, who died from her injuries. Siarhei Ivanou was also found guilty of stealing her belongings.

In a closed trial, Siarhei Ivanou was represented by a state-appointed lawyer. He can appeal the decision.

Belarus is the last country in Europe and Central Asia still applying the death penalty.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Death sentences are often imposed in Belarus after unfair trials which include forced confessions; they are implemented in strict secrecy and without giving adequate notice to the condemned prisoners
themselves, their families or legal representatives. The authorities refuse to return the bodies of those executed to their relatives or even tell them where they are buried. Executions are carried out despite requests from the UN Human Rights Committee to the government not to do so until the Committee has considered the cases. The Human Rights Committee and others have found that the application of the death penalty in Belarus violates the human rights of those condemned and their families.

View the full Urgent Action here.

Name: Siarhei Ivanou (m)
Issues: Death penalty, Legal concern
UA: 66/15
Issue Date: 23 March 2015
Country: Belarus

Please let us know if you took action so that we can track our impact!

EITHER send a short email to uan@aiusa.org with "UA 66/15" in the subject line, and include in the
body of the email the number of letters and/or emails you sent.

OR fill out this short online form to let us know how you took action.

Thank you for taking action! Please check with the AIUSA Urgent Action Office if sending appeals after the below date. If you receive a response from a government official, please forward it to us at uan@aiusa.org or to the Urgent Action Office address below.

HOW YOU CAN HELP

Please write immediately in Belarussian, Russian or your own language:
* Urging President Lukashenka to halt any planned executions and immediately commute the death sentence handed down to Siarhei Ivanou and all others sentenced to death in Belarus;
* Calling on him to establish an immediate moratorium on the use of the death penalty with a view to abolishing it;
* Urging him to ensure that up-to-date information about the use of the death penalty in Belarus is publicly available and that prisoners’ families and lawyers are given full access to them and information about their cases.

PLEASE SEND APPEALS BEFORE 4 MAY 2015 TO:

President
Alyaksandr Lukashenka
Vul. Karla Marksa 38
220016 Minsk, Belarus
Fax: 011 375 17 226 06 10
011 375 17 222 38 72
Email: contact@president.gov.by Salutation: Dear President Lukashenka

Also send copies to:
Charge d'Affaires Mr. Pavel Shidlovsky, Embassy of Belarus
1619 New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington DC 20009
Fax: 1 202 986 1805 I Phone: 1 202 986 1606 I Email: usa@mfa.gov.by

And copies to:
Prosecutor General
Alyaksandr Kaniuk
Vul. Internatsianalnaya 22
220050 Minsk, Belarus
Fax: 011 375 17 226 42 52 (Say "fax" clearly if voice answers)
Salutation: Dear Prosecutor General

Please share widely with your networks: http://bit.ly/1Huppt3

We encourage you to share Urgent Actions with your friends and colleagues! When you share with your networks, instead of forwarding the original email, please use the "Forward this email to a friend" link found at the very bottom of this email. Thank you for your activism!

UA Network Office AIUSA │600 Pennsylvania Ave SE, Washington DC 20003
T. 202.509.8193 │ F. 202.509.8193 │E. uan@aiusa.org │amnestyusa.org/urgent

Report an error, an omission: deathpenaltynews@gmail.com