Brussels, 18 August 2020

EaP CSF Steering Committee statement ahead of the European Council video conference on the situation in Belarus

The EaP CSF Steering Committee condemns the undemocratic presidential election in the Republic of Belarus and the violence against peaceful protesters. It calls onto the European Union to state its non-acceptance of the election results and to recognise the Coordination Council for the Transfer of Power in Belarus.

  • Whereas the presidential election held in the Republic of Belarus on 9 August 2020 were not free and democratic;
  • Recognising the right of the citizens of the Republic of Belarus to express their disagreement with the election results, including through peaceful protests;
  • Witnessing with grave concern the unprecedented level of violence and repression against protesters by the Belarusian authorities, including torture and inhuman treatment of detainees;
  • Taking account of the presence of political prisoners and thousands of illegally arrested persons in the Republic of Belarus;
  • Noting the proposal of the video conference of EU foreign ministers of 14 August 2020 on “EU support in establishing and facilitating a dialogue between the political authorities, opposition and broader society in view of resolving the current crisis”;
  • Considering that the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of the Republic of Belarus are inviolable;
  • Insisting upon the need to resolve the current crisis peacefully;

The Steering Committee urges the European Union to:

  1. State openly its non-acceptance of the results of the presidential election in the Republic of Belarus;
  2. Recognise the Coordination Council for the Transfer of Power in Belarus (Координационный совет для обеспечения передачи власти в Беларуси), formed based on the initiative of presidential election candidate, Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, as a legitimate representation of the citizens of the Republic of Belarus – including its right to negotiate with the government of the Republic of Belarus on behalf of the protesters. The Council is currently being formed in an open and transparent way and will include highly qualified professionals from different economic and societal sectors from across the regions of the Republic Belarus;
  3. Assist the Coordination Council in organising negotiations with the Belarusian authorities on the settlement of the current crisis;
  4. Facilitate the release of all political prisoners, call on the Belarusian authorities to cease the unlawful detention of, and continued violence towards, detainees, and conduct an international investigation into crimes committed against peaceful protesters;
  5. Reaffirm, in accordance with the principles of the Helsinki Final Act, its respect for the independence, sovereignty and existing borders of the Republic of Belarus, including the inadmissibility of the use of force, or the threat thereof, by any state.

Members of the Steering Committee of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum

Zaur Akbar, Youth Club Public Union, Azerbaijan

Olga Chyzhova, Digital Communication Network, Estonia

Ina Coseru, National Environmental Center, Moldova

Lousineh Hakobyan, Europe in Law Association, Armenia

Mikayel Hovhannisyan, Eurasia Partnership Foundation, Armenia

Shahla Ismayil, Women’s Association for Rational Development (WARD), Azerbaijan

Maksym Koriavets, Polissya Foundation for International and Regional Studies, Ukraine

Mikalai Kvantaliani, Association “New Group”, Belarus

Natia Kuprashvili, Journalism Resource Center, Georgia

Adrian Lupusor, Expert-Grup, Moldova

Tatiana Marian, National Trade Union Confederation of Moldova

Sofia Strive, ForumCiv, Sweden

Yurii Vdovenko, Center for Cross-Border Cooperation, Ukraine


Available for download

Statement of the EaP CSF Steering Committee on the situation in Belarus ahead of the European Council video conference, 18 August 2020