Former presidential candidate Svetlana Tihanovskaya is “so far” disappointed by the reaction of the international community to the events in Belarus, and calls for support for civil society and additional sanctions reports the British newspaper Times.
“The fact that the international community did not recognize (Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko as the legitimate winner (of the presidential election – ed.) was very important. They showed support, but did not want to solve the problem,” she said in an interview with the newspaper.
Tihanovskaya called the EU sanctions against Belarus “a mockery,” the newspaper said. “Only 90 people are under sanctions. It’s a mockery,” she said, adding that the government in Minsk is “laughing.
As the newspaper notes, the leader of the Belarusian opposition asks for “the support of civil society – media, human rights activists, protest committees – and the termination of financial support” to Lukashenko’s government. In addition, she says, “we need sanctions against those involved in violent crimes and the judges who convict innocent people.
After the August 9th presidential election in Belarus, which was won for the sixth time by Alexander Lukashenko, who, according to the Central Election Commission, received 80.1% of the vote, the country saw widespread opposition protests, which were even suppressed by the security forces using special means. The opposition believes that Tikhanovskaya won the election, demands new elections, and initiates an expansion of international sanctions against Minsk, adopted earlier by Western countries.
In Belarus, criminal proceedings were initiated against some members of the opposition coordination council created on Tikhanovskaya’s initiative, including calls to seize power, creation of an extremist formation, and conspiracy to seize state power in an unconstitutional manner. Tikhanovskaya, who left for Lithuania after the election for security reasons, is on the international wanted list in Belarus and Russia.
The Belarusian authorities have repeatedly stated that protest actions in the country are coordinated from abroad. Lukashenko has accused the West of direct intervention in the situation in the country, saying that the United States directs the riots, while Europeans “play along. Among the countries from which the protests are coordinated, Lukashenka named Poland, the Czech Republic, Lithuania, and Ukraine.