Belarus’ retaliation against lawyers for representing political opponents and human rights activists, and the country’s interference with the administration of the Minsk Bar Association, contravenes fundamental human rights enshrined in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. The government of Belarus has also violated the right to freedom of expression by retaliating against lawyers speaking on behalf of their clients, and it has violated the right of these lawyers to associate with colleagues and clients without undue interference.
These developments are in clear breach of the legal profession’s core principles, namely the independent regulation of the practice of law recognized in Europe, the United States and internationally.
With nearly 400,000 members, the American Bar Association is the largest voluntary professional membership organization in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law.
Please click here to see the letter sent by Robinson to Ambassador Jeppe Tranholm-Mikkelsen, permanent representative to the European Union,