Prosecutor General of the Republic of Belarus Andrei Shved took part in the 7th meeting of the Interstate Council for Combating Corruption (hereinafter – the ICCC, the Council) via videoconferencing.
For reference. The Agreement on the formation of the ICCC was signed on 25 October, 2013 in Minsk by the heads of six States: the Republic of Armenia, the Republic of Belarus, the Republic of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Russian Federation, the Republic of Tajikistan.
The Council is the body of sectoral cooperation of the CIS and is intended to organize and coordinate, within its competence, the fight against corruption, as well as to review the implementation of the obligations of the participants of the Agreement in the field of fight against corruption, to ensure constructive cooperation with international organizations and their structures.
The main activities of the ICCC:
promotion of convergence and harmonization of national anti-corruption legislation;
working out proposals for the development of the legal framework for cooperation;
coordinating interaction of the competent authorities of the States-participants of the Agreement, as well as interested bodies of the CIS in the fight against corruption.
Other participants include Anna Vardapetyan, Prosecutor General of the Republic of Armenia, Olzhas Bektenov, Chairman of the Anti-Corruption Agency of the Republic of Kazakhstan, Kurmankul Zulushev, Prosecutor General of the Kyrgyz Republic, Igor Krasnov, Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation, Sulaimon Sultonzoda, Director of the State Financial Control and Anti-Corruption Agency of the Republic of Tajikistan, as well as representatives of the CIS Executive Committee.
The issues on the agenda: practice of combating corruption in the named States, current problems and ways to solve them, effectiveness of international cooperation in investigating crimes of illicit enrichment and violations in declaring property, and improving the skills of employees of anti-corruption agencies.
The participants of the meeting made presentations on each of the considered issues.
In his speech, Andrei Shved noted that “corruption not only causes direct material damage, reduces the economic opportunities of the State, but also undermines the principle of social justice, contributes to the growth of tension in society. And in the face of external political and sanction pressure, corruption can become a threat to national security.”
Andrei Shved focused on the invariable approach of the Head of the Belarusian State regarding bringing corrupt officials to justice, regardless of their status, official position and previous merits: “The absence of “untouchables” in our country is confirmed by criminal proceedings initiated against highly-positioned officials for their miscalculations in the organization of anti-corruption work.”
The head of the supervisory agency of Belarus spoke about the novelties in the national legislation aimed at combating corruption:
adoption of the state standard “Anti-bribery management system”, which provides for the development by business entities of a documented system for combating corruption and risk management, training and rewarding personnel for assistance in detecting offenses;
amendments to the Law of the Republic of Belarus “On combating corruption” based on the proposals of the Prosecutor General’s Office (aimed at clarifying the grounds for the seizure of proceeds of illegal enrichment, improving the procedure for declaring income and property, preventing conflicts of interest; provides for a possibility for organizations to request information from law enforcement agencies about corruption offenses committed by its employees);
introduction, at the initiative of the Prosecutor General’s Office, of administrative liability of legal entities, on behalf of which or in whose interests bribery of officials was carried out (the amount of penalties can reach 200 percent of the value of the transferred material assets or provided benefits of a property nature).
“This year, there are already examples of imposing administrative penalties on business entities whose officials were convicted of bribe-giving,” the Prosecutor General of Belarus informed.
The solution of personnel issues was not left without attention: according to the Decree of the President of the Republic of Belarus dated 23 February, 2022 No. 66 “On improving the work with personnel in state bodies”, the Prosecution Service participates in checking the candidates for positions included in the personnel registers of the Head of State, the Government, republican public administration bodies, local executive and administrative bodies.
In addition, the meeting analyzed the implementation of the decisions of the ICCC of 8 September, 2021 and the realization of the Interstate Program of Joint Measures to Combat Crime for 2019-2023, and also approved the work plan of the Council for 2023.
The next meeting of the ICCC is scheduled to be held in Moscow in 2023.
Up to this date, Prosecutor General of the Kyrgyz Republic Kurmankul Zulushev will serve as Chairman of the Council.
As a result of the meeting, a number of decisions in the field of combating corruption were signed.
Photo: Prosecutor General’s Office
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