‘Mothers 328’ picket House of Representatives
Photo: Raman Pratasevich / Euroradio
The mothers of the imprisoned youth convicted for drugs demand to soften the punishment and target drug lords not young users.
“Mothers 328” have gathered in Independence Square, Minsk. They are going to picket the House of Representatives in protest of the fact that MPs have postponed the discussion of article 328 of the Criminal Code.
MPs were supposed to consider the possibility of making the punishment for violating article 328 milder on December 19, Euroradio reported. The draft was approved in the first reading earlier. However, the discussion has bene postponed until the spring session because there was a lot of incomprehension in the state institutions, deputies explained. The MPs did not specify which state institutions were meant.
The activists demand that MPs prolonged the session and considered the changes to the legislation during the autumn session instead of postponing it for 6 months. Meanwhile, today is the last day of the autumn session in the House of Representatives.
Mothers: "We will ask to prolong the session and consider the draft approved by the overwhelming majority in the first reading – 103 votes. As far as we know, it has not been changed. The Parliament has not discussed it during the session and it has not been discussed by the work group either."
The Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Investigation Committee had been planning to change the first part of article 328 – the notion of joint purchase and joint consumption of drugs, Mothers 328 said. However, they are not authorized to discuss the issue, representatives of the Investigation Committee announced at a round-table discussion on December 11.
The activists would like to meet chairperson of the House of Representatives Uladzimir Andreichanka and demand to prolong the autumn session.
Head of the citizen address department Sazonau has talked to the women and told them that their request will be handed over.