The European Parliament believes that in the conditions of pressure on the civil society of Belarus, the scheduled referendum cannot be considered an expression of the free will of Belarusians. This follows from the joint statement of Robert Biedron, the Chair of the European Parliament delegation for relations with Belarus, and Petras Auštrevičius, the Standing Rapporteur of the European Parliament on Belarus, which was published on Tuesday, February 1.
The reason for the joint statement was the data of human rights activists about political prisoners – their number exceeded a thousand people. According to politicians, the first step towards resolving the political crisis in Belarus should be the unconditional release of all those convicted for political reasons.
“In this gloomy context, we cannot regard any possible constitutional referendum as anything else but a sham, which does not reflect the democratic will of the Belarusian people,” the authors of the statement stress.