(No. 223 - August 5, 2011 - 11:30 p.m. ET) Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today issued the following statement on the recent arrest of Ales Byalyatski, chair of the Belarusian human rights organization Vyasna:
"Canada is disappointed by this latest blow to democracy in Belarus.
"The charges against Ales Byalyatski are perceived as politically motivated. They show a complete disregard for Belarus’s international obligations with respect to basic human rights, due process and fundamental freedoms.
"Canada calls on Belarus to immediately stop its campaign of opposition persecution."
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