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Belarus To Deport Head Of Advocacy Group To Russia

The head of a Minsk-based group that advocates basic freedoms is facing deportation to Russia.

A court in Belarus said on November 5 that Yelena Tonkachyova, head of the Lawtrend Legal Transformation Center, must be deported by December 5 and banned from entering Belarus for three years.

Tonkachyova, a Russian citizen who has been living in Belarus since 1985, was informed on October 30 that her residence permit had been annulled.

Authorities said the decision was based on her violation of a traffic regulation.

Lawtrend promotes freedom of expression, freedom of association, and the right of access to information, justice, and a fair trial.

It has been operating in Minsk since 1996.

Tonkachyova has said she has no place to stay in Russia as all her relatives are Belarusian citizens.

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