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21.02.2014

House of Representatives discusses amendments to martial law 45

7:18, — Politics
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House of Representatives discusses amendments to martial law

The house of representatives considers a bill on amendments to the martial law proposed by Lukashenka.

If the amendments are adopted, law-enforcement bodies will be allowed to use weapons against civilians without punishment.

The new version of article 18 Using weapons, military and special equipment reads: Army officers and employees of military organisations [] are not responsible for the damage caused by [] applying (using) weapons in the cases provided for by the Law or other legislative acts if [] they act in the conditions of reasonable professional risk or in case of extreme necessity.

Salidarnasts asks an expert what the new version of the law means for civilians and why it is amended.

We can learn much by comparing the old variant and the amended version, says Mikhail Pashkevich, the coordinator of the campaign For Alternative Civilian Service and activist of Tell the Truth campaign. The bill has been in the parliament since December 9, 2013. We found it by accident when we were looking for a bill on alternative civilian service. It's also important that the bill is not mentioned on the website of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly.

The expert says if the amendments are adopted, the army bodies will receive carte blanche for any actions in case martial law is declared.

Taking into account the fact that the bill was introduced in the middle of December on the initiative of the president, it's obvious that it was inspired by the events in Ukraine, Mikhail Pashkevich continues. Belarusians will became hostages of army bodies if the amendments are adopted.

He thinks the house of representatives creates a smoke screen by considering the law On burial and funeral business to adopt the amendments to the martial law on the quiet.

The MPs have been considering the burial law for more than a month. They are playing for time to adopt the amendments to the martial law on the quiet and bury the remains of democracy, he summed up.

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