All FSI News News July 8, 2021

CDDRL Statement Regarding the Arrest of Tatiana Kouzina by Belarusian Authorities

The faculty and staff of Stanford's Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law, as well as the undersigned alumni of the Draper Hills Summer Fellows Program, wish to protest the completely unjustified arrest and pending trial of the researcher Tatiana Kouzina on June 28 by Belarusian authorities.
Tatiana Kouzina
Tatiana Kouzina

The faculty and staff of Stanford's Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law, as well as the undersigned alumni of the Draper Hills Summer Fellows Program, wish to protest the completely unjustified arrest and pending trial of the researcher Tatiana Kouzina on June 28 by Belarusian authorities. Ms. Kouzina now faces unspecified criminal charges that could lead to her extended detention.

Following a fraudulent presidential election in August 2020, there have been ongoing peaceful protests and demonstrations in opposition of the Belarusian government and President Alexander Lukashenko. During this time, the government has unjustly arrested thousands of activists and protesters. Waves of repression reached politicians, civil society organizations, media, the research community, and ordinary citizens. The arrest of Ms. Kouzina is another in a series of troubling steps that the Belarusian government has taken against its people. We call for the release of Ms. Kouzina and other political prisoners currently being held in Belarus.

Ms. Kouzina is a highly respected Belarusian expert who was the co-founder, teacher, and researcher at the School of Young Managers in Public Administration (SYMPA) and the Belarusian Institute for Public Administration Reform and Transformation (BIPART). In this capacity, she conducted substantial research in the field and contributed to numerous policy and research documents, including as part of SYMPA's participation in EU-STRAT, an international research project implemented by a consortium of the leading European universities (including the Free University of Berlin and Leiden University, Netherlands) and think tanks in 2016-2019. As a long-time recognized member of the Belarusian research community, Ms. Kouzina has contributed immensely to its development and sustainability. From 2010-2015, she was the Executive Director of the Belarusian Institute for Strategic Studies (BISS) and has cooperated with the Belarus Research Council (BRC), other Belarusian think tanks, and civil society organizations throughout her career.

Ms. Kouzina's arrest is a shocking example of the current Belarusian regime's repressive policies that have attacked other members of the Belarusian research and expert community. As researchers ourselves and members of the broader global democratic community, we strongly protest this arbitrary arrest and demand that Ms. Kouzina be released immediately.

Signed,

Francis Fukuyama, Mosbacher Director of the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law, Stanford University, USA

Michael McFaul, Director, Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, Stanford University, USA

Olga Stuzhinskaya, international affairs and development expert, founder and former director of the Office for a Democratic Belarus in Brussels, CDDRL alumni 2006

Victor Liakh, East Europe Foundation, Ukraine

Hoi Trịnh, Board Member, VOICE, USA

Anna Dobrovolskaya, Memorial Human Rights Center, Россия

Mahdi Al Hajat, free journalist, Iraq

Haykuhi Harutyunyan, Corruption prevention commission, Armenia

Ruby Tetteh, Deputy Director, MOTI, Ghana

Denis Volkov, CDDRL alumni, Russia

Dmytro Potekhin, CEO, Factology.Systems, Ukraine

Abbas Milani, Hamid and Christina Moghadam Director of Iranian Studies, Stanford University, USA

Sasha Jason, Program Manager, Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law, Stanford University, USA

Professor Donald Emmerson, Senior Fellow Emeritus, Stanford University, USA

Jamie O'Connell, Lecturer in Residence, Stanford Law School, and CDDRL affiliated faculty, USA

Belinda Byrne, Program Administrator, Stanford University, USA

Katherine Welsh, Administrative Associate at the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law, Stanford University, USA

Amr Hamzawy, Senior research scholar, Stanford University, USA

Erik Jensen, Professor of the Practice of Law, Director, Rule of Law Program, Stanford Law School, USA

Anna Grzymala-Busse, Michelle and Kevin Douglas Professor of International Studies, Stanford University, USA

Marcel Fafchamps, Senior Fellow, CDDRL, Stanford University, USA

Yusmadi Yusoff, People's Justice Party (KEADILAN), Malaysia

Olga Aivazovska, Head of Board, Civil Network OPORA, Ukraine

Befekadu Hailu, Center for Advancement of Rights and Democracy (CARD), Ethiopia

Varvara Pakhomenko, Consultant, Russia

Olena Sotnyk, Human rights defender, Ukraine

Elsa Marie DSilva, Red Dot Foundation, India

Laila Kiki, The Syria Campaign, Syria

Alla Kos, Austria

Nino Evgenidze, EPRC, Georgia

James D. Fearon, Professor, Stanford University, USA

Nino Chichua, Georgia Healthcare Group, Georgia

Janaína Homerin, Draper Hills Summer Fellow, Brazil

David Smolansky, Mayor in Exile, Venezuela

Hadeel AlQaq, Jordan

Eka Kemularia, Director, Green Line, Georgia

Yuriy Bugay, Independent consultant, NGO activist, Ukraine

Lauren Weitzman, Program Manager CDDRL, Stanford University, USA

Steve Luby, Professor of Medicine, Stanford University, USA