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Valiantsin Stefanovich

HRC Viasna

Valiantsin Stefanovich is a prominent human rights defender from Belarus, board member of the Human Rights Centre Viasna, and the vice-president of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH). Valiantsin Stefanovich is an expert analyst in human rights and has campaigned to abolish capital punishment in Belarus; he also took part in the OSCE election monitoring missions.

The environment for the work of human rights defenders (HRDs) in Belarus has continuously deteriorated since an authoritarian political regime was established there in 1994. HRDs are systematically subjected to intimidation and harassment, including judicial harassment, restrictions on freedom of expression, association and assembly, and movement, as well as arbitrary detention and conviction, ill-treatment and defamation, searches of offices and personal belongings, and confiscations of equipment. The widespread impunity of law enforcement officers contributes to even further human rights violations and retaliations against HRDs.