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EU Rejects Belarus Vote Result as Lukashenko Orders Clampdown

Rogue Valley

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EU Rejects Belarus Vote Result as Lukashenko Orders Clampdown

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8/19/20
The European Union on Wednesday rejected the result of Belarus's disputed presidential election as strongman leader Alexander Lukashenko ordered his security forces to prevent any further unrest. Following an emergency video conference on the elections, European Council chief Charles Michel said the EU would soon levy sanctions against a "substantial number" of people responsible for vote rigging and the violent suppression of protests in the ex-Soviet country. Protesters have flooded the streets of Belarusian cities in the wake of the Aug. 9 election, waving the red-and-white flags of the opposition and calling on Lukashenko to step down after he claimed a sixth term with some 80% of the ballot. German Chancellor Angela Merkel told reporters that the EU rejects the results of the vote, which was "neither free nor fair." Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, a 37-year-old political novice who fled to neighbouring Lithuania after claiming victory in the vote, earlier on Wednesday urged EU leaders not to recognise the "fraudulent" ballot. "Lukashenko has lost all legitimacy in the eyes of our nation and the world," she said in the video appeal.

Europe's longest-serving leader, Lukashenko has resisted calls to resign or hold new elections and has accused the opposition of attempts to "seize power." During a meeting of his security council on Wednesday, Lukashenko ordered his government to prevent further unrest and shore up protections along the ex-Soviet country's border. "There should be no more riots in Minsk. People are tired; people demand peace and quiet," Lukashenko told officials. He said the protective measures on the border were necessary to stop "militants, weapons, ammunition and money from other countries from entering Belarus to finance the riots." Tikhanovskaya, a trained English teacher who said she never planned to enter politics, contested the vote after her husband was jailed and barred from running against Lukashenko. She has vowed to hold new elections and a Coordination Council which her allies created to oversee the transfer of power convened on Wednesday. Nobel Prize-winning author and outspoken Lukashenko critic Svetlana Alexievich has been named a member of the group.

The Lukashenka regime is now firing factory workers that participate in the strikes. But all pretense has vanished. The Belarussian people well know that Lukashenka stole this election.

A third person shot last week by OMAN security forces has died of his wounds in a Minsk hospital. There remain hundreds of protesters in regime detention centers being subjected to vicious beatings.

Valery and Veranika Tsapkala, chief political aides to Ms. Tikhanovskaya and her imprisoned husband, have safely fled to Poland.

Related: Belarus opens criminal case against opposition leaders
 

Rogue Valley

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Democracy -- Lukashenka style
 

Rogue Valley

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Citation from an unidentified twitter account
 

Ringo Stalin

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The NATO Secretary General said that no one, including Russia, should interfere in what is happening in Belarus.

Such calls are made by NATO only in one case - if the Alliance itself is very limited in its ability to intervene.
 

Rogue Valley

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The NATO Secretary General said that no one, including Russia, should interfere in what is happening in Belarus.

Such calls are made by NATO only in one case - if the Alliance itself is very limited in its ability to intervene.

Again, no citation.
 
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