The United Nations Human Rights Council has discussed the use of excessive force and human rights violations against defenseless citizens in Belarus.
The Holy See’s Permanent Observer to the United Nations, Archbishop Ivan Jurkovič, also addressed the council. The debate which took place within the 45th Session of the Human Rights Council was entitled “On the Situation of Human Rights in Belarus.”
The Vatican’s Holy See, which has been following the situation in Belarus since the controversial presidential elections, has renewed its appeal for a peaceful and just resolution to the tensions through sincere dialogue. And now, through the Human Rights Council, they are calling for the rejection of violence, and respect for justice and fundamental human and civil rights. (Read: Archbishop Barred From Entering Belarus After Criticizing Government)
According to Archbishop Jurkovič, Pope Francis has been constantly expressing his solicitude for Belarus, especially for its local Catholic Church. He says this was most evident in the recent visit to Belarus of Archbishop Richard Paul Gallagher, the Vatican’s Secretary for Relations with States.
Archbishop Jurkovič also added that that the visit was in hopes of bringing about a “deeper understanding of the ecclesial mission of the Church and of the instrumental role that it plays in fostering social reconciliation and national cohesion.” (Read: Belarus Renews Invitation to Pope Francis Despite Tension)
Hear the Protesters
Addressing the brutal protests taking place in Belarus, Archbishop Jurkovič said that the Vatican’s Holy See sees that “it is indispensable that demonstrators present their requests in a peaceful way. It is also necessary that governing authorities exercise restraint and listen to the voices of their citizens and remain open to their aspirations, assuring full respect for their civil and human rights.”
In the end, Archbishop Jurkovič reiterated the Holy See’s desire to see “a peaceful and rapid resolution to the ongoing tensions” and that the Vatican is open to be a part of “any further discussion that might bring about such much-needed peace.”