PROTECT THE COORDINATION COUNCIL OF BELARUS FROM LUKASHENKO!

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Petition

PROTECT THE COORDINATION COUNCIL OF BELARUS FROM LUKASHENKO!

My name is Andrei Kureichik. I am a playwright, producer, screenwriter, and, as a member of the Belarusian Coordinating Council, I ask all concerned people, and especially members of the cultural and art communities to support this petition.

On August 18, 2020, the Coordination Council was created in Belarus. The Council is a representative body of the Belarusian society designed to help Belarus escape the deep political crisis that erupted after the election results were falsified in order to keep the current President, Alexander Lukashenko in power.

More than 7,000 innocent people were arrested as a result of forceful actions to retain power. Almost all of them were subjected to inhuman treatment, beatings and torture, unthinkable in the 21st century in a European state. This violent treatment of innocent people resulted in the death of 5 individuals and with more than 80 reported missing, who have likely also been killed in acts of violence. The harrowing footage of these events was broadcast all around the world.

This injustice lead to unprecedented protests and strikes of millions of citizens. Employees of thousands of enterprises across the country demanded the resignation of President Lukashenko followed by new and fair elections. However, the confrontation between citizens and government-controlled militias threatened a new round of violence, bloodshed and even death.

Facing this situation, the Coordination Council selected about 40 of the most prominent figures of Belarus out of 400 candidates representing a wide variety of professions: politicians and journalists, doctors and filmmakers, artists and workers, musicians and economists, lawyers and teachers. These are the people with the highest authority in their fields; talented, successful and peaceful. Most of them have never worked in the civil service, were not interested in active politics, never fought for power and do not strive for it. Nevertheless, Alexander Lukashenko accused them of trying to seize power. The General Prosecutor's Office has launched criminal proceedings against the members of the Coordination Council.

The absurdity and political motivation of these accusations have already been recognized by the UN, the European Union and most of the modern world. The Belarusian authorities are looking for criminals in the wrong place. Svetlana Aleksievich, a Nobel laureate in literature did not falsify elections. It was not an outstanding artist Vladimir Tsesler who beat innocent people to a pulp. It was not the head of the Belarusian Association of Journalists, Andrei Bastunets, who turned off the Internet in the country so that people would not know the truth. It was not film director Yuri Khashchevatsky who mocked women and minors in concentration and torture camps. It was not Yulia Chernyavskaya, a culturologist, who handed out unjust sentences to peaceful citizens. It was not Ambassador and Minister Pavel Latushko who closed the National Theater of Belarus by force. It was not me, playwright Andrei Kureichik, who seized power by illegal methods after having lost the elections. All this was done by the people in power.

Now, when the people are ready to stand up against these criminals, it is the Coordination Council that makes every effort to prevent this civil conflict in Belarus from escalating to bloodshed and violence. The people in power chose a path of violence and for this, the best people of Belarus are declared criminals?

We, who signed this petition, demand that the real villains who caused this violence in Belarus be punished. We demand a peaceful resolution to the political crisis in Belarus. We demand that the laws be strictly followed. We demand an end to the political persecution of the Coordinating Council - the real authorities and patriots of Belarus. The criminal case against these respected people must be dropped immediately!

We express our solidarity with everyone who suffered from political repression in Belarus.

We ask all political and cultural figures, scientists, people of theater, cinema, television, literature, journalism and caring citizens of all countries of the world to join this petition!

Andrei Kureichik