David McAllister MEP: The people of Belarus have a right to determinate their future
The European Union has been following the developments in Belarus very closely and with increasing concern. The 9 August elections were neither free nor fair. Therefore, we do not recognise the results.
The people of Belarus have a right to determine their future. The European Union has expressed our clear solidarity with the people of Belarus in their desire to exercise their fundamental democratic rights.
I condemn the disproportionate and unacceptable violence displayed by the state authorities against peaceful protesters. Violence must be avoided and all those unlawfully detained must be immediately and unconditionally released. Civil society and opposition actors engaged in discussions of political transition must be protected from arbitrary arrests and violence. A complete and transparent investigation into all alleged abuses must be conducted.
The European Union will soon impose sanctions against a substantial number of individuals responsible for violence, repression and the falsification of election results.
Progress made in the past years in the relations between the EU and Belarus is at risk. Any further deterioration of the situation will impact on our relations and have negative consequences.
I call on the Belarusian authorities to find a way out of the crisis through an end to violence, de-escalation, and an inclusive national dialogue. Only a peaceful and democratic process, underpinned by independent and free media and a strong civil society, can provide sustainable solutions. All parties, including third states, should support such a process.
The EU will continue to follow the situation closely and stand ready to contribute to efforts to peacefully end the crisis. The EU fully supports OSCE proposals for dialogue in Belarus and is ready to provide assistance to further them.