Charles Michel condemned and expressed his concern about the sentencing and imprisonment of the leadership of the Belarusian Congress of Democratic Trade Unions (BKDP).
"I have been closely following these illegal actions of the Lukashenko regime. This kind of further repression against Belarusian society, which continues to target civil society, human rights defenders and trade union members, is deeply worrying. The EU calls for the immediate release of the unjustly detained trade union activists," he said in a letter to Esther Lynch, Secretary General of the ETUC and PERC European Trade Union Confederation.
He also informed the leadership of the confederation that he was following the court hearings in these and other cases through the EU Delegation in Minsk:
"The EU attaches great importance to freedom of association and is firmly committed to promoting the effective implementation of relevant international labour standards".
"The EU continues to hold the Lukashenko regime accountable for political repression, illegal persecution and gross violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms. The EU continues to support the people of Belarus, democratic forces and civil society as a whole".
The President of the European Council said that he would continue to monitor the situation in Belarus, including through his delegation in Minsk.