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Elena Tonkacheva: My deportation is suspended, but the course of appeal procedure is very odd

30.11.2014  |  Society   |  Piotr Kuchta, EuroBelarus,  
Elena Tonkacheva: My deportation is suspended, but the course of appeal procedure is very odd

The human rights fighter also has questions to documentation of suspension of her deportation from the country.

On November 28 Pershamaiski District Department of Internal Affairs prolonged Elena Tonkacheva’s registration of temporary residence in Belarus for a month.

- On November 28 I submitted an appeal to the Central Department of Internal Affairs of Minsk City Executive Committee Department regarding the decision about deportation made on November 5 by the Pershamaiski District Department of Internal Affairs, - the Chair of the Board of the Legal Transformation Center “Lawtrend” told in the interview with EuroBelarus Information Service. – In the appeal, I indicated the circumstances of why I consider the decision of my deportation to be illegal and unjustified in detail.

Elena Tonkacheva mentioned that “in general, the appointment of the deportation procedure is very doubtful under my circumstances”.

- As I understand, all arguments regarding the threat to the public order due to minor speeding is a false threat and are built on supposition and can’t be confirmed over the period of my thirty-year stay in Belarus. In result, the decision that significantly infringes my rights and legal interests, as well as limits my freedom of movement was based on this false threat and supposition.

And that, Elena Tonkacheva believes, is in direct conflict with the provision of the current law in Belarus.

- The document says that the deportation is made for securing the public order. But first, the notion of “public order” has a specific list of such offences. Secondly, this list is restricted. And it is according to this restricted list that the state body has to make a decision, where deportation is the extreme measure for securing the public order.

Elena Tonkacheva assumes that the situation is the same for Russia, while our countries signed international agreements aimed at providing equal rights for Russians and Belarusans, including the restriction on the freedom of movement, freedom of being, freedom of staying and place of residence at the territory of the countries-participants of the Union State.

- Because of these agreements Belarus and Russia should have equal aims of legislation and equal law enforcement practice on these matters. Thus, apart from violating basic agreements between Belarus and Russia and unlawful practice of Russian citizens’ deportation, we also can see violations of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Covenant on Civil and Political Rights that guarantee privacy from excessive invasion, as well as provisions of international laws that guarantee the freedom of choice of the place of residence and movement.

According to Elena Tonkacheva, the appeal also indicates “that until now the Pershamaiski District Department of Internal Affairs refused to acquaint me with the materials of the case, which creates significant hindrances for preparation of the full and exhaustive appeal to the actions of the District Department of Internal Affairs”.

- I got an answer neither to my oral motions nor to the written motions. Unfortunately, my lawyer wasn’t able to access the materials of the case and their copies, too. I believe this to be a direct violation of rights and legal interests of citizens in relation to whom the procedure introducing serious changes to their lives is applied.

The resolution about deportation was served only 15 days after the decision of the deportation was made.

- And it only happened after a personal meeting with the head of the Department of Migration and Citizenship in the Ministry of Internal Affairs Aliaksei Biahun on his personal order. It appears that in law enforcement practice there is an absolutely illegal approach according to which migration services somehow think that they are not supposed to give a document where reasons and motives of such tough measure response as deportation are described in detail.

Elena Tonkacheva recalls that according to the recent statements of the Belarusan Migration Services annually from two thousand to two thousand five hundred people are deported for administrative violations.

- There must appear the situation that many people can’t appeal the decision, as there is no such practice as service of a document.

Even the procedure of suspension has caused “serious difficulties among the officials of the Pershamaiski District Department of Internal Affairs”.

- Article 58 of the Law on the legal status of citizens and stateless persons at the territory of Belarus directly mentions suspension of deportation in case the appeal is filed. However, the law doesn’t regulate the procedure of suspension of deportation. They might be regulated as some instructions for the workers in the migration system. But nevertheless, my permission to stay in Belarus was prolonged, even though I didn’t get any corresponding document.

Elena Tonkacheva says that she doesn’t dare to evaluate the actions of the law enforcement officials and make forecasts of how the situation will be developing:

- For example, I was convinced that more than 7 thousand signatures in my support and more than 20 appeals of the leading public organizations will affect the decision of the Pershamaiski District Department of Internal Affairs. Nevertheless, an obviously discriminating and disproportionate decision was made. The higher level of the migration services will be more open not only to my arguments but also to the arguments of the public. However, we can only see that after the appeal is considered. of course, I am very thankful to all the people and organizations for support and spreading the information about the situation with my deportation.

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