Political parties maintain their membership as civil society strengthens its institutions and work on proposals to amend the Constitution continues
By Valeria Kostuygova
Local and professional civil society bodies become stronger thanks to new recruiters and better distribution of tasks. Pavel Latushka has established the People's Anti-Crisis Administration. Political players and civil society are working on proposals to amend the Constitution.
The first week after the deadline of Tsikhanouskaya's ultimatum, the previously established trend persisted, that is, local and professional self-government institutions continued to grow stronger. Strike committees at plants, local community chats, proto-trade unions of educators, medical and culture workers and other spontaneous unions continued to grow in number. Due to better organization, their response to current developments in Belarus has also improved so as the set of demands, adding points to the national agenda (three major demands: holding new elections, ending violence and punishing those responsible for it, and releasing political prisoners) relevant and specific to each group.
Registered political parties have ignored the Justice Ministry’s requirement to submit membership lists for the re-registration. The Justice Ministry announced re-registration just recently, even though such a procedure is not envisaged by the law, let alone the requirement to submit membership lists after the registration.
Pavel Latushka announced last week the creation of the People's Anti-Crisis Administration (PACA), a transitional government. De facto, this initiative has created the opportunity for those members of the nomenclature who seek the opportunity to switch sides. Currently, the PACA is comprised of those who either have already switched sides (like Latushka himself, Kotov, Gerasimenya) or represented civil society institutions before the political turmoil (like Hubarevich, Kavalkova).
Human rights activists continue to collect information about victims of state repression and report large-scale lawlessness. A “Viasna” Human Rights Centre report published last week referred to some 15,000 arbitrary detentions since August 9th, over 100 political prisoners, and over 500 cases of abuse.