The Presidential elections in Belarus on 9 August 2020 were marred by mass falsification. Alexander Lukashenko’s declaration of victory was met by unprecedented public protest across the country. Law enforcement agents responded to peaceful protests by detaining and ill-treating hundreds of protesters. As clashes between the police and peaceful demonstrators continue thousands of videos and pictures of police brutality and excessive use of force taken by bystanders and citizen journalists have emerged on the Internet. Identifying, verifying, safely archiving and organizing this evidence is vital for future accountability efforts.
Call for volunteers
Truth Hounds, Bellingcat and International Partnership for Human Rights are looking for volunteers who will support our efforts of collecting, verifying and archiving open source evidence of mass human rights violations taking place in Belarus.
Who are we looking for?
Welcome to apply are individuals who speak Russian and/ or Belarussian, have basic computer skills, access to the internet and can spend a couple of hours per day to make a contribution to ensuring accountability for human rights violations in Belarus. You can contribute to the project from any location, as long as you have a computer with internet access.
When does the project start and how long will it last?
The project is already running and will continue as long as human rights violations in Belarus occur. We anticipate that volunteer contributions will be needed for at least 4 weeks.
How will the collected evidence be used?
We plan to use the collected evidence to shed light on the systemic and widespread nature of abuse by law enforcement agents who target peaceful civilians in Belarus. In the short term they collected evidence will be used for advocacy purposes. In the long term we are hoping that the evidence will be used by the courts to prosecute individuals who are perpetrating grave crimes and human rights abuses.
Will there be a training for volunteers?
Truth Hounds and IPHR will provide basic instruction and on the job coaching for all volunteers. You will learn how to work with open source evidence including identification, verification, downloading and archiving of videos/photos and other types of open source data. We will provide you with practical tools that you will be using throughout the research process and your work will be supervised by experienced researchers.
Where can you apply?
If you feel enthusiastic about this project and have the necessary skills please write to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Download the call here.