Brisbane, March 31, 2021
To Belarusian friends
To Polish friends in Belarus
To the friends of the Belarusian people
The repression of the representatives of the Polish national minority in Belarus has escalated to a higher level – after attempts to ban the organization of Poles in Belarus, several Belarusian activists from the Polish community abroad were arrested a few days ago – the President of the Union of Poles in Belarus, Andżelika Borys, and members of the Main Board of the Union of Poles in Belarus – Irena Biernacka, Maria Tiszkowska. and Andrzej Poczobut. Polish activists were arrested for being Poles, having the courage to reside and live in Belarus, and wanting to call this country, together with their Belarusian neighbours and friends, their homeland.
The activity of the Polish community abroad, guaranteed by international law in the field of national minorities’ freedoms, allows the cultivation of Polish history, culture, language and national traditions. Such freedoms are experienced by, for example, the Polish community in Australia and other democratic countries. That is why the recent events in Belarus – the rigged presidential elections, the pacification of social protests against this forgery, and now the arrest of Polish community activists – are received by us with sadness and anxiety, and the latter also with disbelief. But there is also hope.
Let the example of Poland remind the current regime in Belarus that, although not now and not immediately, the time of historical justice will come for the Belarusian nation. The rich and long history of Polish freedom movements is a historical testimony to this. Stigmatizing Poles living in Belarus just because they are Poles, raises the libertarian act of their ancestors to the symbolic rank of a victorious freedom crusade for every nation, including Belarusian. Therefore, we appeal for solidarity with all political prisoners in Belarus – Belarusians fighting for their freedom as well as for that of Poles in Belarus, who by their imprisonment and the history of their ancestors give hope for a victorious end to this struggle.
On behalf of the Polish Community Council of Australia
The Executive Committee