The State Administration of Belarus
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Nicolas

SW 2021.04.18 The MFA of Sweden – Currently acts as a Formal Paper-Pusher and Administrative Agent.

The MFA of Sweden currently lives under the impression that it is enough to just act as a formal paper-pusher and administrative agent.

The Swedish Reality – The Dark Side

From the very beginning of my litigation, I have been facing a blatant denial of justice in Belarus. I have been witnessing a grave violation and abuse of my children and of my own rights to have a “FAIR” trial.

 On the other hand, some governments that are supposed to fight for the rights of the left-behind parents prioritize their own business and political goals over their abducted children. Even though they are also their own citizen. Many governments won’t do much if they have any other more substantial economic/political interests in that country.

As the left-behind parent, you have to navigate very carefully yet still remain resilient as, at the end of the day, you will become the sole and the primary leader of this fight – because nobody else cares about your children more than you.

The Central Authority of Sweden currently lives under the impression that it is enough to just act as a formal paper-pusher and administrative agent rather than to support their citizens and act dynamically to try to get abducted children back home. In the end, I was forced to reach out for help internationally, and I got help from the USA!

From that moment and on, the MFA of Sweden started to move, not much, but compared with earlier when they barely moved, this was a new experience that I didn’t believe existed in the organization of the Swedish Government.

The “engagement” of the MFA and the Central Authority of Sweden happened only thanks to my persistent follow-ups and my control over the whole process. The chaos within the Swedish Central Authority can be documented by how they react (or, rather – not react) to any new important events happening in my case. Thus, I was continuously updating and providing them with official translated documentation about my case.

Apparently, Sweden is considered one of the worst Hague violators by many countries, which, unfortunately, is not surprising to me. I have witnessed a series of shocking gaps in the qualifications of the staff working at the Swedish Central Authority, which I have duly documented.

I did the heavy lifting instead of the Swedish Government, which was barely moving at all. The weak link in the battle for the return of my abducted children has been the Swedish State.

Finally, when I in April 2020 demanded to have all the documentation on performed actions by them in regard to my case (as this is my legal right), I received back around 150 pages, including my communication with them and internal communication between units in Sweden, including some (very few) external communication with their counterpart in Belarus. Nine of these pages (around 6%) were blank documents, as the MFA of Sweden was using the law about confidentiality as an argument to deny me the content of these pages. Thus, what was impressive to notice was the fact that Sweden never filed any complaint to International Organizations (NGOs) against Belarus that blatantly violated “The Hague Convention” regarding Child Abduction!

The cherry on the top was when I received the following statement from the MFA of Sweden;

You can read a report/article regarding the Swedish dogma of “Neutrality” and the misuse of it.

To Conclude;

In my opinion, Sweden, with their silence and reluctance, indirectly covered up Belarus, which did not respect Human Rights, Children’s Rights, nor their signature as a contracting State under “The Hague Convention” in regards to Child Abduction!

When doing the aftermath and reading the interaction between Attorney Ms. Martha Poni, the MFA of Sweden, and myself, I am now convinced that there was nothing of value to read in the blank pages I received in 2020. Sweden did nothing to protect their two Kidnapped Citizens and never filed any Complaint to any International Organization in regard to the grave violations committed by the Belarusian State. If the MFA of Sweden tells the opposite, then I consider them not telling the truth, and I have my way of finding out the truth, Ms. Neiglick. It’s only a matter of time!

I believe in transparency and the ancient idea of Democracy. Therefore, beneath follows a chronology in descending order (timeline) of the interaction between Ms. Martha Poni, the MFA of Sweden, and myself. This is so the audience who visit the website AACA can read and have the opportunity to draw their own conclusions.

Timeline of interaction in Descending order

2021.04.08
ΜΑΡΘΑ ΠΟΝΗ
Thu, Apr 8, 10:45 PM
to Erica, me

Mrs. Neiglick

I would really like to complain about your general answers, which seem diplomatic and pointless.

The information we are asking you about concerns the case of Mr. Cheropoulos and his children. Is it confidential information, whether you have actually made any reference or complaint to an official body or institution concerning Belarus? Is there a reason to protect Belarus or something that serves Sweden’s interests? I really do not understand.

Forgive me, but your reluctance to give us clear answers raises the suspicion that the Swedish authorities have done nothing.

In this case, the negligence of the competent Swedish authorities in handling the case of Mr. Cheropoulos should be checked.

I’m sorry for the way you treat this father, who fought alone with the beast called the Belarusian judiciary.

Regards,
Martha Poni

2021.04.01
Erica Neiglick
to me, poni_ma@yahoo.gr

Dear Mr. Cheropoulos,

Thank you for your email of 23 March, in which you demand the name of the Organizations with protocol number and date the MFA of Sweden claims to have submitted complaints and protests too.

I understand your demand as a request that would fall under Chapter 6, section 4 of the Public Access to Information and Secrecy Act, which reads as follows:

At the request of a natural or legal person, a public authority must disclose information from an official document held by the authority unless the information is classified as secret or it would hamper the due course of the work to do so.

Kindly be informed that documents concerning your case are in the file from which you have already requested all documents and received the documents that are not considered confidential. There is no separate compilation of the information you request. I do, however, as Elin has also done, refer to the email I sent to Ms. Poni and Mr. X X on 20 February 2020, in which you were copied and where information was provided as to different occasions when statements have been made, or measures have been taken concerning your case and/or Belarus’ compliance with the Convention, even though the information is not as detailed as you demand.

Kind regards,
Erica Neiglick

2021.03.23
Nicolas Cheropoulos
to Elin, Erica, Martha

To: Ms. Pontén, Ms. Neiglick & to whom else it might concern

Ms. Pontén,

In regards to your reply dated 12th of Mars 2021 on Ms. Martha Poni’s previous request, which was sent to the MFA of Sweden on 11 February 2021, I would like to comment on the following in your reply attached beneath:

To express myself mildly, I consider the content in your reply to be pitiful and pathetic! In the year 2020, I made a request to the MFA of Sweden to have copies of all actions performed by the organization you represent. In return, I received copies of all the documentation (translated) I have been providing MFA of Sweden with since 2017 and many blank pages without any content because your organization was using the article about ”confidentiality” to deny me this crucial information.

MFA of Sweden has used the argument of confidentiality to deny me information on what actions have been taken to protest and protect 2 of your underage citizens. Who has been kidnapped to the contracting state of Belarus who doesn’t respect and constantly violates the Human and Child Rights of your two underage citizens, my two daughters!

Therefore, let me rephrase Ms. Martha Poni’s request about what bodies and organizations the MFA of Sweden have filed complaints and protests against the violations of Human and Child Rights by the state of Belarus.

Under Swedish law, I have the right to this information, and I will make it easy for you this time, so you will not have to use the argument that it is confidential.

Recently I read an article about how the MFA of Sweden issued visas wrongfully to Afghan citizens ( https://nyadagbladet.se/inrikes/ud-anstalld-utfardade-felaktiga-visum-till-afghaner/ ). When I asked to issue new passports to my Abducted Children, it was denied with the argument that they must be physically present at the Swedish Embassy in Minsk! At that time, my children were 7 and 4 years old.

If you refuse to respond to my legitimate request, I reserve the right to proceed with all lawful action to defend my legitimate interests.

Nicolas Cheropoulos

2021.03.12
Elin Klockars Pontén
To: ΜΑΡΘΑ ΠΟΝΗ
Sent: 2021-03-12 (Παρασκευή, 12 Μαρτίου 2021, 1:54:51 μ.μ. EET)
Subject: Sv: Case of Mr. Cheropoulos

Ms. Poni,

I apologize for not having been able to get back to you earlier.

We do not have a compilation of when measures were taken in Mr. Cheropoulos Hague-Case. The applicant has continually been informed about measures taken in the Hague Case.

I also want to refer to the email Erica Neiglick sent to you and Mr. X X on 20 February 2020.

Best regards,
Elin Klockars Pontén

2021.03.08
ΜΑΡΘΑ ΠΟΝΗ Mon, Mar 8, 2021 at 10:20 AM
To: Elin Klockars Pontén <elin.klockars.ponten@gov.se>
Cc: Nicolas Cheropoulos <nicolas.cheropoulos@gmail.com>, Erica Neiglick <erica.neiglick@gov.se>

Ms. Ponten,

I sent you an email on February 11, 2021, and you have not answered me yet. Please reply to this email.

Regards,
Martha Poni

2021.02.11
ΜΑΡΘΑ ΠΟΝΗ Thu, Feb 11, 4:20 PM
to Elin, me, Erica

Ms. Ponten,

Could you inform me about the official international organizations and institutions to which you have raised the issue, how many times have you done so, and on what dates (Please give me details)? I am interested because I would like what happened to Mr. Cheropoulos not to happen to anyone else. It is also very important for a law-abiding state like Sweden, which respects international law and human rights, to formally and publicly object to Belarus’ tactics. These tactics must be reported and made public.

Regards,
Martha Poni

2021.02.11
Elin Klockars Pontén Thu, Feb 11, 3:00 PM
to ΜΑΡΘΑ, me

Ms. Poni,

The issue has been raised on several occasions, and we will continue to raise the challenges we have seen in Belarus when it comes to their application of the Hague Convention.

Best regards,
Elin Klockars Pontén

2021.02.03
ΜΑΡΘΑ ΠΟΝΗ Wed, Feb 3, 9:02 AM
to Elin, Erica, me

Ms. Ponten,

Despite the fact that, as I understand it, you now consider the case of Mr. Cheropoulos closed, I would like to ask you if you intend to protest to any international organization or institution about Belarus that has violated the Hague Convention.

Regards,
Martha Poni

2021.02.02
Elin Klockars Pontén Tue, Feb 2, 2021 at 9:12 AM
To: Nicolas Cheropoulos
Cc: ΜΑΡΘΑ ΠΟΝΗ

Mr. Cheropoulos,

I want to start by apologizing for not getting back to you earlier.

It is very sad to hear how the situation has turned out, and I hope that in the future, you will be able to have contact with your children.

In light of your email, Ms. Poni´s email, and the information given by the central authority in Belarus – access rights can only be secured through a court proceeding – which we have understood is not an option; we will proceed to close the file.

With this said, we cannot rule out that the embassy could follow up on the well-being of your children in the future.

I once again wish you all the best.

Best regards,
Elin Klockars Pontén

2020.11.30
Elin Klockars Pontén <elin.klockars.ponten@gov.se>
To: ΜΑΡΘΑ ΠΟΝΗ
Cc: Nicolas Cheropoulos
Nov 30, 2020, 2:42 PM
Subject: Case of Mr. Cheropoulos

Mr. Cheropoulos and Ms. Poni,

As we informed earlier, the Swedish embassy has turned to Belarusian authorities in order to try and get information about your children’s whereabouts. The information was denied. However, we are in contact with the embassy, and we will make a follow-up in this regard.

The central authority in Belarus has, as you know, informed you that in order to have access to your children, you have to make a request to the court. Just for your information, if the situation was the opposite, i.e., a parent in Belarus sought access with his/her child in Sweden, we, as the central authority, would also inform the applicant that he or she has to take the case to court. This is a very common procedure, at least in Europe. However, the difference is that we, as a central authority, would first assist by trying to locate the child and see if access could be secured on a voluntary basis. We are of the opinion that such tasks fall within the scope of the 1980 Hague Convention. With this being said, we do not fully agree with the Belarusian central authority, and this is one of the issues we will follow up on.

I will keep you updated and get back to you after our follow-ups.

When it comes to the matter of raising the issue, it has been raised on several occasions, and actions will continue. As you understand, I cannot go into details in this regard.

Mr. Cheropoulos, thank you for your last email. I will take a closer look at it and get back to you.

Best regards,
Elin Klockars Pontén

2020.11.29
Nicolas Cheropoulos
Sent: den 29 november 2020 16:07
To: Elin Klockars Pontén
Copy: Erica Neiglick; Ann Linde; Christina Johannesson; martha poni
Subject: My Children

Hello Ms. Pontén,

Thank you for your reply.

First of all, I would like to make a correction (to my previous letter), I am not a Swede, but a Swedish citizen, which I, unfortunately, have been reminded of too often through the years which passed. But I continue to care about my country because I consider Sweden to be my homeland.

I understand that it is not easy, under current circumstances in Belarus, to deal with Belarusian authorities (not that it ever was easy, but the country is now in turmoil, so I understand it might be even worse now).

That being said, if conventional methods do not work, I believe it is time to apply non-conventional methods, don’t you think so?

I am sure that the Swedish Embassy is aware of the fact that the Monastery itself is located only about 14 minutes by car from our Embassy. Please see below:

Google Mapp

This is where Anthie’ is going to school (unfortunately – because, as you know, I was never informed about this, and I also protested this in the Belarusian courts recently, however, and as usual, ruled in favor of my former partner without taking into consideration any of my arguments including my proposal to pay for another private and/or international school in Minsk).

As such, please let me know when would anyone from the Swedish Embassy finally go and visit Anthie’ at that Monastery school. This Monastery is a public place, and if they pretend to be “Christians”, then they should not have any issues with letting you agree on regular checkups (once a month, for instance) on Anthie. After all, Anthie (and Alexandra) is still a Swedish citizen, too, not only Belarusian.

Alternatively, you could also call directly my former partner. Her cell phone number is; Mobile: +375 xxxxxxxxx & Home: +375 xxxxxxxxx. Have you ever tried doing so? Have you tried to talk to her directly or to invite her, let’s say to some cafe (public space), even in the presence of her lawyer if she wished to, to discuss the situation? Our Ambassador speaks the language fluently, so there will not be any language barriers!

Ms. Pontén, sending out emails or calling Belarusian authorities is a waste of time or energy, as we can see. They do not obviously care about you or me or anyone else at all. Over 3 years have passed since my kids were abducted, and nothing really moved much since. So, please try to be creative and brainstorm other possibilities for contacting and tracking my children.

If anything happens to my kids, who would even inform me about this? If anything happened to my ex-partner – the same question: how would I even know? My children are currently living in a turbulent, violent country that might soon also be slapped with severe sanctions, so their life will become even more miserable than it is now. Will we just be sitting here in comfort and safety emailing them or calling them while watching things going out of control in Belarus and having zero information about Swedish citizens living there involuntarily (nobody asked Anthie’ and Alexandra whether they agreed to be abducted and live a poor life in Belarus with their mentally unstable mother who just put them to an extremist and intolerant Monastery environment plus let them infect with COVID-19 despite knowing that this would happen – and never told me about this, either).

Ms. Pontén, my duty as a father and as a citizen is to continue highlighting and fighting this blatant injustice and ignorance of any human or parental rights that my children and I face in Belarus. Time is running very quickly, and I do not have the luxury of time to just wait and hope for any miracles. I did my part by fighting for my kids’ return to Sweden for 3+ years, investing all of my energy, money, efforts, etc., with minimal to zero support from anyone else. This is also duly documented on my website. However, I exhausted all of my options, and so the only way to try to change anything for my children is really to try more direct forms of communication with my ex-partner and my children there.

As such, I would like to ask you to please put more pressure, and more targeted pressure, in my case. You know that at any moment, the current situation can turn into an open civil war there (they already are in a half-civil war, per se), and I will then not know at all where my kids are or what is going on with them. How will you keep track of them?  Please let me know.

Christmas is approaching very quickly, and I will not be able to express my love for my children because I am cut off!

Respectfully,
Nicolas Cheropoulos

2020.11.23
ΜΑΡΘΑ ΠΟΝΗ <poni_ma@yahoo.gr>
Date: Mon, Nov 23, 2020, at 12:45 PM
Subject: Case of Mr. Cheropoulos
To: Elin Klockars Pontén
Cc: ann.linde@gov.se, Erica Neiglick, Christina Johannesson

Dear Mrs. Ponten,

I have not communicated with you for a long time now because I really wanted to see if the MFA of Sweden, acting as the Central Authority, would take any substantial action in the last few months.

Unfortunately, after all this time, you, as representative of the Central Authority of Sweden, continue to give us the same answers. You have told us dozens of times that you keep trying to approach the central authority in Belarus in different ways. For months now and years, I can say we get the same answer from your Μinistry. What else have you done? The central authority of Belarus ostentatiously ignores you as if you do not exist. Have you complained about it to any competent organizations and bodies?

I imagine you realize that it is not possible for us to receive such answers all the time. These answers offend your Ministry, but they also offend the intelligence of Mr. Cheropoulos and mine as well. I think you are making fun of us, hoping that Mr. Cheropoulos will get bored and give up. But I would like to emphasize that we are talking about his children, and I am sure that he is not going to give up. Instead, he will ask for responsibilities from anyone who is responsible in the international courtyard.

Regards,
Martha Poni

2020.02.20
Erica Neiglick Thu, Feb 20, 2020 at 5:19 PM
To: “poni_ma@yahoo.gr”, “xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx”
Cc: “nicolas.cheropoulos”

Dear Ms. Martha Poni and Mr. xx xx,

Thank you for your e-mails dated 23 January 2020 and 27 January 2020 to the Swedish Central Authority for the 1980 Hague Convention (the Ministry for Foreign Affairs). I apologize for not having been able to get back to you sooner. As you have e-mailed our office with similar content, a joint response is hereby sent.

As you may know, my colleague N.Y. has had frequent correspondence with Mr. Cheropoulous regarding his case and, on numerous occasions, provided information on how we, as a Central Authority, work, and measures are taken.

When it comes to the matter of raising the issues of Belarus’s compliance with the 1980 Hague Convention, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs has continuously made assessments of suitable ways. At any given time, we decide on what level and in what form it may be appropriate to raise the issue. We cannot always provide information but do so when deemed suitable. Mr. Cheropoulos has been informed about this and also about certain steps taken by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, for example, the Swedish embassy’s presence at the court hearings in 2018, participation in the annual Human Rights dialogue between EU and Belarus in June 2019 including this subject and Sweden’s statement in connection to the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in Belarus – 18th Meeting, 41st Regular Session Human Rights Council (http://webtv.un.org/search/id-sr-on-human-rights-in-belarus-18th-meeting-41st-regular-session-humanrights-council/6054633098001/?term=&lan=English&cat=Meetings%2FEvents&sort=date&page=5#player). In addition, the matter has been raised on a high political level.

A separate email will be sent to Mr. Cheropoulos in response to his email on 2 February 2020 addressed to the Swedish Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Minister for Justice and Migration, and the Minister for Health and Social Affairs.

Best regards,
Erica Neiglick

2020.02.19
ΜΑΡΘΑ ΠΟΝΗ <poni_ma@yahoo.gr>
Sent: den 19 februari 2020 12:44
To: Nadia Yousri UD Registrator <ud.registrator@regeringskansliet.se>; Ju Registrator <ju.registrator@regeringskansliet.se>; FA Registrator <fa.registrator@regeringskansliet.se>
Copy: Nicolas Cheropoulos; X X <xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Subject: Case of Mr Cheropoulos

To Whom It May Concern

Dear All,
As you may remember, I am Martha Poni, the lawyer and the legal representative from Greece who has been following Mr. Cheropoulos’ case from day one.

I sent you an email on January 23, 2020. To date, not only have you not replied to my email, but you have not even confirmed that you have received it. Let me also remind you that an email was sent to you by Mr. X X on, January 27 of, 2020, who is the legal representative of Mr. Cheropoulos in Belarus, and he has not received any confirmation that you have received his email either.

Awaiting your reply, as you are obliged, at least confirm that you received my email of 23 January 2020.

Yours Sincerely,
Martha Poni

Nicolaos AA Cheropoulos
Father of Anthoula and Alexandra
Reviewed Oct. 2023
en_USEN