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Minsk Skeptical Of Dialogue With UN Rights Rapporteur

The Belarusian Foreign Ministry says it is doubtful that a constructive dialogue is possible with Miklos Haraszti, the UN Council on Human Rights' special rapporteur for Belarus.

The ministry's Yury Ambrazevich told journalists in Minsk on February 10 that the UN post occupied by Haraszti was established "without consultations with Minsk and without the Belarusian government's consent."

Haraszti published his first assessment of the human rights situation in Belarus last year.

In the report, Haraszti noted that human rights in Belarus are systematically restricted, especially in the case of freedom of association, assembly, and expression, as well as the right to a fair trial.

Haraszti had planned to meet with officials and civil society activists in Belarus while working on the report, but the Belarusian authorities denied him an entry visa.

Based on reporting by Belapan and Interfax

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