The European Communication Research and Education Association (ECREA) is deeply concerned about the continuing suppression of freedoms and fundamental human rights, such as the freedom of expression, following the 9th of August 2020 presidential election in Belarus.
The academics who criticized social, economic, political and cultural policies of the current government exist in an ongoing climate of fear. More than 1000 Belarusian scientists signed a petition condemning state violence against its own population following this presidential election. On Thursday the 13th of August 2020, this initiative was denounced by the head of Belarusian National Academy of Science who tried to intimidate those involved.
ECREA strongly condemns any intimidation, violence and unlawful detention of academics and students during the peaceful demonstrations held across the country following the election. ECREA calls on the Belarusian authorities to respect the values outlined in the Constitution, including the importance of free and fair elections, as well as the humane treatment of citizens by the police and other security forces.
We are also concerned about the impact of recent events on intellectual freedom, including the academic activities of our members and colleagues in Belarus. In the light of this, ECREA expresses its continuous support to our Belarusian members and colleagues. ECREA calls upon Belarusian authorities to end state violence, political discrimination and stop the perpetuation of the climate of fear.