Human Rights Defenders for Free Elections

Праваабарончы цэнтр «Вясна» беларускі хельсінкскі камітэт

Statement by the High Representative on parliamentary and local elections in Belarus

Josep Borrel. Photo by Reuters
Josep Borrel. Photo by Reuters

EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell spoke about the Belarusian elections*.

"Parliamentary and local elections were held in Belarus. The continuously increasing and unprecedented level of repression, human rights violations, restrictions to political participation and access to independent media by the Lukashenka regime have severely undermined the legitimacy of the electoral process. In this context, it is clear that conditions for free and fair elections were not met and new parliamentary and local officials lack democratic legitimacy.

The European Union regrets that the Belarusian authorities did not invite an election observation mission by the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe / Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODHIR), contrary to Belarus’ international commitments. This further illustrates the lack of transparency of the electoral process and the failure to ensure its adherence to international electoral standards. 

The EU continues to support the democratic right of the Belarusian people to elect their representatives through genuine, democratic and transparent elections. We urge the immediate and unconditional release of all political prisoners, and their effective rehabilitation.

The EU commends and supports the efforts of the Belarusian democratic forces and civil society. The determination of the Belarusian people, who at great personal risk continue to stand up for democracy, is an important factor for hope."

US State Department issued a statement: The sham elections were held in a climate of fear

Immediately after the closing of polling stations in Belarus, the US State Department issued a statement calling the elections in Belarus fictitious.