The central Election Committee does not think that the TV action of the TV channel ONT “For Belarus!” is an agitation campaigning in support of A. Lukashenka. This opinion has been expressed by the secretary of the CEC Mikalay Lazovick said.
Officials from the European Union told a congressional hearing in Washington February 1 that it is essential the United States and Europe unite in responding to developments in Belarus before, during and after its March 19 presidential election.
Another streamer with the words “Fed Up With Him!” was placed in Minsk on Saturday, February 4. This time Zubr activists put it up on the bridge over Dzerzhinsky Avenue by Musical Comedy Theatre. Such streamers are put up in the Belarusian capital and all over the country almost every day, the press service of the movement informs.
Copies of a petition with more than 16,900 signatures collected by activists of the international human rights movement “Amnesty International” were sent to embassies of Belarus and Uzbekistan recently. The petition urges governments of Belarus and Uzbekistan to abolish capital punishment, and thus make the region a zone free of the capital punishment.
Commenting on the meeting of the presidential hopeful, the representative of democratic forces of Belarus Alyaksandr Milinkevich with the leaders of the European Union and the German Chancellor Angela Merkel, prominent German politicians say about a clear signal of the EU concerning support of democracy in Belarus. In a conversation with the Radio Svaboda, German MP Elizabeth Member, a representative of the Green Party, and the European Parliament member, sees in Milinkevich’s meeting with Ms Merkel a real turnaround toward the former Soviet countries.
On February 4-5 in Vaukavysk words “Go Away!” appeared at the buildings walls. The writings were made in the central part of the town in black and red paint, at administrative buildings and blocks of flats. Police has brought up a criminal action on charges relating hooliganism. On Sunday after 7 p.m. a search was carried out in the apartments of two members of the initiative group of Alyaksandr Milinkevich, Viktar Vajtsiuk and Vital Hulyak.
In Smarhon a regional branch of the Belarusian Popular Front “Adradzhenne” and the Independent Trade Union of Vendors of Smarhon region have been liquidated. This decision has been passed by the local regional executive committee. As said by the leaders of these public associations Ales Dzerhachou, these were the last democratic structures in the city.
On February 4 in the night at the Belarusian - Ukrainian border officers of the Belarusian customs office held a search in personal belongings of activists of the civil informational campaign “Enough!”, who were on their way from Kyiv to Minsk, the Radio Svaboda informs.
The outcome of the formation of precinct election commissions confirms once again that the authorities are going to rig the vote, Anatoly Lebedko, leader of the opposition United Civic Party (UCP), told BelaPAN. Out of the total of 74,104 members on 6,586 precinct commissions for the country’s presidential election coming up in March, only 122 are representatives of political parties. Opposition parties have just two members on the commissions – one represents the United Civic Party and the other is a member of the Belarusian Social Democratic Party "Hramada.”
The European Union and the United States cancelled a joint high-level visit to Minsk after the Belarusian authorities had not issued visas allowing Robert Cooper, director general for external and political-military affairs of the Council of the European Union, and Dan Fried, US assistant secretary of state for Europe, to enter Belarus simultaneously, according to US State Department Spokesman Sean McCormack.
Belarusian opposition leader Aleksandr Milinkevich is expected to leave for Moscow on February 6 to take part in an international conference on the Belarusian-Russian relationship in the context of Belarus’ forthcoming presidential election.
Novopolotsk, 3 February. The post offices in Novopolotsk and Polotsk have refused to deliver the local independent biweekly Khimik to its subscribers. "The postal service will deliver our newspapers to readers for the last time next week," editor-in-chief Sergei Balai told BelaPAN. "Afterward the newspaper plans to launch its own delivery service."
The U.S. State Department has said that a high-level visit to Belarus by U.S. and European Union officials has been canceled because Belarusian authorities would not issue visas, Reuters reported. “We are both disappointed by the failure of the Belarusian authorities to take this opportunity to engage in an open and frank dialogue with the international community,” said State Department spokesman Sean McCormack.
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said at a high-level international conference in Munich on February 5 that he does not doubt that the incumbent leader, Aleksandr Lukashenko, will win in Belarus’ forthcoming presidential election.
US Senator John McCain called upon world leaders to boycott the G8 summit in Russia in July, questioning Moscow`s commitment to democracy. n a speech to the Munich Conference on Security Policy, McCain said that President Vladimir Putin had rolled back reforms in Russia and did not share the democratic values of the United States and Europe.
On Friday the prosecutor of Pershamajski district of Minsk presented charges and chose the measure of restraint for the activists of the Young Front Artur Finkevich and Alyaksei Yanusheuski. After a three-day examination the investigator of Pershamajski district police department Alyaksandr Hlushchuk collected materials for accusation on charges relating violation of the Article 339 Part 2 of the Criminal Code (Malicious hooliganism). According the materials of this case, forwarded to the prosecutor’s office, it was decided to arrest Artur Finkevich and keep him in a remand prison before trial. Andrei Yanusheuski stays under a written undertaking not to leave the place.
Russia’s minister of economic development and trade, German Gref, suggested that the Federal Customs Service should sign an agreement with Belarus’ State Customs Committee on control over the movement of goods across the shared border, reported the Russian newspaper Rossiyskaya Gazeta.
US Ambassador George Krol gave a lecture at the Brest Regional Gorky Library on Friday dedicated to the 260th birthday of Thaddeus Kosciusko. After the lecture the diplomat answered questions and visited an exhibition devoted to the Belarusian-born hero.