September 25, 2023

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Belarus president accuses Russia, Poland of election interference

Belarus president accuses Russia, Poland of election interference

Minsk (AFP) – Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko on Thursday accused Russia and Poland of interfering in an approaching presidential election, claims that were swiftly denied by the Kremlin.

The strongman leader of authoritarian ex-Soviet point out is looking for his sixth term as president in the election scheduled for August 9.

The interference is coming from “all those who dwell in Poland and those who incite from Russia,” Lukashenko said at a assembly with newly appointed authorities officials.

Lukashenko explained he would discuss the issue with Russian President Vladimir Putin at a conference in the close to long term but cautioned that the condition remained “particularly tricky”.

A lot of of Lukashenko’s critics have been jailed in recent months and opposition figures who enjoy robust assistance from the community have fought difficult to get on the ballot, observers say.

Lukashenko, who just Wednesday was in Moscow, reported there are “horrific fakes” currently being distribute about him, some in Russian nameless social media accounts.

“It is really not ours, the information is coming from Russia,” he explained.

“There are the most modern untrue technologies staying applied, there is interference from overseas into our elections, our domestic affairs.”

The Belarusian interior ministry later accused “Telegram channels” of orchestrating protests.

Quite a few bloggers have been arrested in Belarus, commencing with previous presidential hopeful Sergei Tikhanovsky, who has been charged with hurting a police officer and arrested in May well.

On Thursday, well-known opposition Telegram channel Belarus of the Mind, which has about 170 thousand followers, mentioned law enforcement has detained a person of its authors Igor Losik and was browsing his flat.

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Yet another blogger arrested in Slutsk, a town south of Minsk, was billed with “insulting a community official” and plotting unrest, rights team Viasna said Thursday.

The Kremlin in the meantime flatly denied the allegations.

Russia “isn’t meddling, and isn’t really likely to meddle in the electoral procedures of any nation, enable alone all those under way in our ally, Belarus,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov explained to reporters.

– ‘Pure propaganda’ –

Lukashenko’s major election rival Viktor Babaryko was arrested this month more than suspected economical crimes and the future working day the president declared his authorities had foiled a overseas plot to phase a well-known rebellion.

“Certainly, puppeteers are behind them,” Lukashenko claimed of his political opponents. “They are from equally sides. They contribute from Poland and from Russia.”

The deputy head of the opposition BNF party, Alexei Yanukevych, referred to as the accusations “pure propaganda to discredit the opposition.

“If Russia is actually attempting to interfere, why not combat Russia, why combat Belarusian society?” he explained to AFP.

The operate-up to the vote has found a flurry of opposition exercise sparked by the marketing campaign of Tikhanovsky, a well known video clip blogger, which has stood in stark contrast to the incumbent’s standard Soviet tactic to campaigning.

The Organization for Protection and Co-operation in Europe, an intercontinental election and war keep an eye on, has not recognised any polls in Belarus as free of charge and honest given that 1995.

Lukashenko frequented Moscow this 7 days to take part in a military parade to mark 75 years since the Nazi Germany’s defeat in Entire world War II.

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Russia and Belarus have long experienced near trade and armed service cooperation, but the Kremlin has identified as for deeper integration while Lukashenko has opposed outright unification.