Torture, kidnapping, ill-treatment – the list of allegations against the ruler Lukashenko in Belarus is long. Now lawyers in Germany are also accusing him of crimes against humanity.
Berlin (dpa) – Ruler Alexander Lukashenko has been reported to the federal prosecutor in Karlsruhe for the excesses of violence following the Belarusian presidential elections.
According to information from the German news agency, four German lawyers have filed criminal charges on behalf of torture victims for crimes against humanity. “Our clients expect Germany to stand up for the defense of universal human rights even in the case of Belarus,” said the lawyers. They called for an independent investigation, which was not to be expected in Belarus itself.
The so-called world law principle makes it possible to prosecute international law crimes committed by foreigners in other countries. In Belarus, neither Lukashenko nor members of his security apparatus were threatened with legal repercussions, the lawyers said.
According to the UN Human Rights Council, there have been numerous reports of torture, kidnappings, arbitrary deportations and disappearances in Belarus. The lawyers said their ten clients spoke of physical abuse, food and sleep deprivation, humiliation and degradation. They were left on their knees for hours with their hands tied so that they could support themselves only with their heads. All customers had serious health consequences. In general, the treatment by the state can only be described as brutal, the lawyers said.
After last August’s presidential elections, which were widely regarded as faked, hundreds of thousands of people occasionally protested against long-term ruler Lukashenko in Belarus. The EU and the US have imposed sanctions on Belarus for the excessive violence of the security forces against peaceful protesters. More than 30,000 people were temporarily arrested during the protests. Hundreds of people were injured and several died. The opposition sees opposition member Svetlana Tichanovskaya, who fled to the EU country of Lithuania, as the real winner of the elections.
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