Daily Archives: 28/05/2021

The Philippines: Ecija court acquits rights lawyer, wife in unjust vexation case filed by local police chief

27/05/21

A Nueva Vizcaya court has acquitted a human rights lawyer and his wife who were both accused of uttering unsavory words towards a local police chief while retrieving the personal effects of an assassinated National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) consultant.

Both Atty. Edu Balgos, of the National Union of Peoples’ Lawyer-Nueva Vizcaya, and wife Rina were separately charged with unjust vexation.

In the case of Rina, based on the complaint filed by Aritao police station chief Police Chief Inspector Geovanni Cejes, she allegedly uttered “bakit niyo pinapakialaman ang mga gamit ng biktima [Why are you tampering with the things of the victim]” and “alam niyo na, baka plantingan pa nino yan [Maybe you will plant evidence]” while inside the police station. She also allegedly badgered Cejes with a congressional summon.

On the part of her husband, Cejes alleged that Atty. Balgos yelled at him over the phone and accused him of human rights violations and also threatened him with a congressional summon.

In acquitting the two, the court said the prosecution left out crucial details such as the approximate time, place, and other circumstances where the supposed incident happened that caused distress to the police officer.

The court also pointed out that the testimony of the witness for the prosecution is consistent with the testimony of Rina.

The police officer said Rina was at the police station to witness the investigation of the case of the slain NDFP consultant when she uttered the unsavory words. But the witness said Rina’s purpose of going to the police station was to get the belongings of the NDFP consultant. Rina said when she went to the police station, she was asked to wait outside. The prosecution witness said she saw Rina sitting outside. The witness also said she did not hear Rina accuse the police of planting evidence on the clothes of the deceased NDFP consultant.

[…]

https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1437947/ecija-court-acquits-rights-lawyer-wife-in-unjust-vexation-case-filed-by-local-police-chief

https://www.rappler.com/nation/supreme-court-justices-warn-red-tagging-hit-understanding-ideologies

Lebanon: Les avocats de Beyrouth en grève aujourd’hui et lundi

28/05/21

Les avocats de Beyrouth en grève aujourd’hui et lundi

Le mouvement se fait en signe de protestation contre l’arrestation de Rami Alleik, chef de l’ONG Mouttahidoun, accusé de diffamation à l’encontre du Conseil supérieur de la magistrature.

Le conseil de l’ordre des avocats de Beyrouth présidé par Melhem Khalaf a appelé hier à une grève aujourd’hui et lundi en signe de protestation contre l’arrestation de l’avocat et activiste Rami Alleik, pour diffamation à l’encontre du Conseil supérieur de la magistrature (CSM) et humiliation de la justice. Me Alleik fait partie de l’ONG Mouttahidoun, auteure d’une plainte auprès de la procureure près la cour d’appel du Mont-Liban, Ghada Aoun, contre le gouverneur de la Banque du Liban, Riad Salamé, et le PDG de la banque SGBL, Antoun Sehnaoui. Il a été arrêté hier alors qu’il se rendait au bureau de Me Khalaf, qui l’avait convoqué pour être informé des détails de ses démêlés avec la justice pénale.

L’avocat avait auparavant refusé de se présenter devant les services de renseignements des FSI sur ordre donné par l’avocat général près la Cour de cassation, Ghassan Khoury, à la suite de la plainte déposée par le CSM auprès du procureur général près la Cour de cassation, Ghassan Oueidate. Le juge Khoury a alors donné l’ordre aux services de renseignements des FSI d’amener menotté Me Alleik.

« Au moment où Rami Alleik se dirigeait vers le bureau du bâtonnier, des individus se sont rués sur lui avec violence, avant de le conduire menotté vers une destination inconnue », a indiqué un communiqué publié par le conseil de l’ordre des avocats. En soirée, on apprenait que l’avocat est détenu dans la prison du Palais de justice. « Nous demandons la remise en liberté immédiate de notre collègue et exigeons que des comptes soient demandés à ceux qui l’ont arrêté de manière illégale et non conforme aux pactes internationaux des droits de l’homme », a ajouté le texte.

[…]

https://www.lorientlejour.com/article/1263326/les-avocats-de-beyrouth-en-greve-aujourdhui-et-lundi.html

https://www.lorientlejour.com/article/1178522/mouttahidoun-et-green-globe-portent-plainte.html

Repression Rages in Belarus, Targeting Ever More Lawyers Too

27/05/21

An increasing number of Belarusian attorneys have seen their law licenses removed for trying to defend opposition figures.

Sitting in her car and talking via an encrypted video link on her smartphone from Minsk, disbarred lawyer Liudmila Kazak said her life and work as a legal defender for Belarusian opposition figures is more like fiction than real life.

“The situation really is like you’re reading a book,” Kazak said, speaking in Russian through a translator, in an interview with Courthouse News. “This book is about how there is a sort of state dictatorship in this country.”

Kazak is among a growing number of lawyers who are getting barred from practicing law in Belarus. In a new report, the American Bar Association said the disbarments appear to be part of a “larger pattern of retaliation by the Belarus government against lawyers for representing political opposition members and protesters and speaking out about the rule of law and human rights in Belarus.”

The dystopian book in which Kazak has found herself is part of is the same one captivating some 10 million Belarusians as their nation becomes ever more isolated from the rest of the world under President Alexander Lukashenko.

Soviet-style leader whose office teetered on the verge of collapse eight months ago in the face of massive street protests, Lukashenko has held onto power while keeping a tight grip on politicians, journalists, students, everyday citizens, activists and lawyers.

This crackdown reached a new low on Sunday when Belarus forced a Ryanair passenger flight passing through its airspace to land in Minsk, where authorities promptly arrested Roman Protasevich, a prominent 26-year-old opposition journalist and activist aboard the plane. This incident sparked international condemnation, and the European Union blocked air travel to and from the country.

[…]

https://www.americanbar.org/groups/human_rights/reports/belarus-arbitrary-disbarment/

https://www.baltictimes.com/tsikhanouskaya_to_organize_intl_belarusian_solidarity_action/

https://meduza.io/en/news/2021/05/27/belarus-reportedly-deems-russian-student-sofia-sapega-a-suspect-in-third-criminal-case

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-57240371

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-57238628

https://www.rferl.org/a/belarus-lukashenka-crimes-against-humanity-germany-court/31238838.html

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/may/26/belarus-regime-uses-video-confessions-tool-silence-dissent-raman-pratasevich

https://meduza.io/en/news/2021/05/25/russian-national-sofia-sapega-remanded-in-custody-in-belarus-for-two-months

https://www.reuters.com/world/mother-detained-belarus-bloggers-girlfriend-hopes-miracle-2021-05-25/

https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/reporters-without-borders-holds-protest-against-belarus-blogger-arrest-2021-05-27/

https://www.amnesty.org/en/documents/eur49/4191/2021/en/

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-57247332

https://www.amnesty.be/veux-agir/agir-individus/reseau-actions-urgentes/action-urgente-pratasevich (FRANCAIS)

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Franak Viačorka (@franakviacorka) | Twitter