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Protests in Minsk continue

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Protests in Minsk continue


Alexander Lukashenko has been re-elected President of Belarus, but a small crowd of protestors has spent a second night in his capital’s main square to denounce his third-term victory as a sham. That opinion is shared by the OSCE, EU, and American observers of Sunday’s ballot, which saw Lukashenko increase his share of the vote since 2001 to 83 percent.

In Brussels the Austrian Foreign Minister Ursula Plassnik gave the EU’s first reactions to the Belarus opposition’s claims of persecution and fraud, in a vote they called an “anti-constitutional coup”; “We have started a discussion today that will be continued and will include also the possibility of taking restrictive measures against those who are responsible for the acts in the course of the electoral process”. The United States has also been quick to react through the State Department’s Sean McCormack; “The United States cannot accept as legitimate the election results announced yesterday by the Belarusian central election commission declaring Alexander Lukashenko the winner in a landslide”. However just ahead of arriving for visit to Beijing Russia’s President Putin sent a message to Minsk saying the win showed voter approval of Lukashenko’s policies.
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