David McAllister: European Parliament supports the people of Belarus demanding change
The Foreign Affairs Committee chair David McAllister made a statement following to a Committee discussion on the situation in Belarus with opposition leader Svetlana Tsikhanouskaya.
“Today the European Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs held an extraordinary meeting to discuss the situation in Belarus. We heard an inspiring message of Ms Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, the united opposition candidate, who is widely regarded as the candidate who got the majority of votes in the presidential election. We expressed our admiration for her courage and her call for peaceful democratic change that the people of Belarus are demanding.
The European Parliament overwhelmingly supports the right of the people of Belarus to participate in free and fair elections and to exercise their rights and freedoms.
Now more than ever Belarusians need our solidarity and support. The European Union needs to do all in its power to strengthen the cause of freedom and democracy in Belarus. This includes effective sanctions against perpetrators of violations of human rights and electoral fraud, and pressure to release all political prisoners and those arbitrarily detained. The violence against the people must end!
The only viable solution for a stable future of a sovereign Belarus is a dialogue involving all domestic and international stakeholders, leading to a peaceful solution.”
A recording of the discussion, including interventions by opposition leader Svetlana Tsikhanouskaya and EU External Action Service Secretary General Helga Schmid, is available here.