Belarus sheds neutral status in vote critics call rigged
Belarusian authorities say more than half of the country’s voters approved constitutional reforms that would allow its authoritarian leader to stay in power until 2035 and open the way for stronger military cooperation with Russiawashingtonpost.com
Belarus opposition leader warns of border migration crisis
Belarusian opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya has called for the global community to stop a “humanitarian catastrophe” which she said is being created by the Belarusian regime as it facilitates largescale migration into the European Union.
Belarus opposition leader seeks new US, European sanctions
The leader of Belarus’ embattled opposition hopes the United States and Europe will impose new sanctions on money-making government enterprises that will lead to the collapse of President Alexander Lukashenko’s regime and a peaceful transition that pro-democracy supporters are preparing for because “it can happen very fast.”.
Belarus leader vows to keep up raids of NGOs, media outlets
The longtime leader of Belarus vowed Thursday to continue a crackdown on civil society activists he regards as “bandits and foreign agents.” President Alexander Lukashenko chided officials in his administration for allowing the operation of non-governmental organizations that he called “harmful to the state.” “A mopping-up operation is going on,” Lukashenko said.news.yahoo.com
Blinken meets Belarus opposition leader as criticism mounts
Secretary of State Antony Blinken met on Monday with Belarus’ main opposition leader as the United States steps up criticism of the government in Minsk for a widening crackdown on dissent following disputed elections last year. Blinken met with Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya at the State Department to show support for her and other protesters demanding an end to repression. Tsikhanouskaya was President Alexander Lukashenko’s main challenger in the August 2020 election and was forced to leave the country after the polls that the opposition and the West saw as rigged.news.yahoo.com
Belarus expands crackdown on independent media
Authorities in Belarus raided the homes and offices of independent media outlets and civil society activists Friday, widening a crackdown on opposition in the ex-Soviet nation. The Belarusian Association of Journalists and the Viasna human rights center said authorities searched the apartments and offices of at least 31 journalists and activists in the capital of Minsk and seven other cities. “The authorities are using an entire arsenal of repressions against journalists — intimidation, beatings, searches and arrests,” Andrei Bastunets, the head of the journalists' association, said..news.yahoo.com
Belarus' presidential hopeful gets 14-year prison sentence
The highest court in Belarus convicted an aspiring rival to the nation's authoritarian president on corruption charges that he rejected as politically motivated and sentenced him Tuesday to 14 years in prison. Viktor Babariko, the head of a commercial bank owned by Russian natural gas company Gazprom, had hoped to challenge President Alexander Lukashenko last year, but he was arrested before the country's August 2020 presidential election and prohibited from registering as a candidate. At the time, he was widely perceived as Lukashenko's main rival, and his arrest drew thousands of protesters to the streets.news.yahoo.com
Belarus opposition slams dissident TV confessions as coerced
The Belarusian opposition said Friday a dissident journalist was coerced to appear in a video on state TV in which he wept and praised the country's authoritarian ruler, a broadcast sharply criticized by Western officials. In the 90-minute video broadcast Thursday night, Raman Pratasevich repented for his opposition activities and said he respects Belarus' President Alexander Lukashenko as "a man with balls of steel.” Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, the main opposition candidate in Belarus’ presidential election in August 2020, said she would urge the U.S. and the EU to pressure Belarus to release him.news.yahoo.com
Why Belarus Targets Critics in the Streets and Skies
Belarus has long pursued its president’s critics on the streets, and now it’s turned to the skies. For more than 26 years, President Alexander Lukashenko has maintained his hold on power in the East European country of 9.3 million people, putting thousands of opponents in jail or forcing them abroad. Riot police and sweeping arrests gradually stamped out large-scale street protests following his disputed election in August 2020 for a sixth term. In the latest extraordinary move, Belarus forced awashingtonpost.com
Belarus opposition leader in Slovenia before EU presidency
Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya spoke during her visit to Slovenia, a small Alpine nation that is slated to take over the rotating presidency of the European Union in July. “It is extremely important to keep Belarus high in agenda on international level with our difficult fight for democratic changes,” Tsikhanouskaya said after a meeting with Slovenia's foreign minister, Anze Logar.news.yahoo.com
Belarus opens terrorism probe against opposition leader
FILE - In this Saturday, March 20, 2021 file photo, Belarus opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, right, poses for photos with demonstrators during a protest demanding freedom for political prisoners in Belarus at the Cathedral Square in Vilnius, Lithuania. Belarus authorities on Monday March 29, 2021, announced a criminal probe against Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, the nation's top opposition figure, on charges of terrorism, a move that follows a sweeping police crackdown on protesters demanding the resignation of the country's authoritarian leader. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis, File)KYIV – Belarus authorities on Monday announced a criminal probe against the nation's top opposition figure on charges of terrorism, a move that follows a sweeping police crackdown on protesters demanding the resignation of the country's authoritarian leader. Belarus' Prosecutor General Andrei Shved said his office has launched a criminal investigation against Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, the top opposition candidate who challenged President Alexander Lukashenko in a presidential vote in August. Earlier this month, Lithuania dismissed Belarus's demand to extradite Tsikhanouskaya, with the Baltic nation’s foreign minister saying that “hell will freeze over first.”
Hundreds arrested in Belarus 'Freedom Day' protest
People carry a giant historical flag of Belarus during a celebration 103rd anniversary of the declaration of the Belarusian People's Respublic, in Vilnius, Lithuania, Thursday, March 25, 2021. Freedom Day is an unofficial holiday in Belarus celebrated on 25 March to commemorate the declaration of independence by the Belarusian Democratic Republic on that date in 1918. The Thursday protest marked the anniversary of the 1918 declaration of the Belarus People's Republic, an independent state that lasted only a few months before the Red Army moved in. The opposition traditionally observes the anniversary as the country's unofficial Freedom Day. The arrests came a day after their leader, Andżelika Borys, was sentenced to 15 days in jail for holding unauthorized mass events.
Belarus journalist sentenced for report on protester's death
Belarusian journalist Katsiaryna Barysevich, seen in cage, attend a court hearing in Minsk, Belarus, Tuesday, March 2, 2021. On Tuesday, the Moskovsky District Court in Minsk sentenced Barysevich to six months in prison and a fine equivalent to $1,100. (Sergei Sheleg/BelTA Pool Photo via AP)KYIV – A court in Belarus on Tuesday handed a half-year prison sentence to a journalist on charges of revealing personal data in her report on the death of a protester, part of authorities’ crackdown on demonstrations against authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko. On Tuesday, the Moskovsky District Court in Minsk sentenced Barysevich to six months in prison and a fine equivalent to $1,100. Last month, two other journalists in Belarus were convicted of violating public order and sentenced to two years in prison after they covered an opposition protest.
Former presidential hopeful goes on trial in Belarus
Viktor Babariko, the former head of Russia-owned Belgazprombank, gestures a heart symbol sitting in a cage in a court room in Minsk, Belarus, Wednesday, Feb. 17, 2021. Viktor Babariko, the former head of Russia-owned Belgazprombank, has been jailed since June on corruption and money-laundering charges. The 57-year-old Babariko could face up to 15 years in prison if convicted at the trial in the Supreme Court of Belarus, the country's highest. The president sought to cast Babariko's election bid as part of efforts by Belarus' main sponsor, Russia, to exert pressure on his government and try to weaken the country's independence. “That was deadly dangerous for Lukashenko.”But facing Western sanctions over the vote-rigging and the crackdown on protests, Lukashenko has come to rely increasingly on Moscow's subsidies and political support.
Belarus targets journalists, activists in new raids
Authorities in Belarus have raided the homes and offices of journalists and human rights activists. Police searched the offices of the Belarusian Association of Journalists and the Viasna human rights center, as well as the apartments of its members. (AP Photo)KYIV – Authorities in Belarus raided homes and offices of journalists and human rights activists Tuesday in the latest move to squelch protests against authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko. The leader of the Belarusian Association of Journalists, Andrei Bastunets, was one of those detained and later released. “This is an attempt to intimidate journalists and human rights activists who have been telling the world about the unbelievable scale of repressions,” said Viasna's deputy head Valiantsin Stefanovic.