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Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Belarus opposition leader to meet top officials in Germany

Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya went into exile in Lithuania after the August 9 presidential election in Belarus, which election officials claimed that Lukashenko won in a landslide.

Berlin | Updated: October 7, 2020 2:13:27 pm
Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, former candidate for the Belarus' presidential elections arrives for a meting with French President Emmanuel Macron in Vilnius, Lithuania, Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020. (AP Photo/Mindaugas Kulbis)

Belarus opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya is meeting top German officials on Wednesday, a day after sitting down with Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin.

She’s been trying to lobby support for the Belarus opposition movement and is set to meet with Norbert Roettgen, a top lawmaker in Merkel’s conservative party.

The opposition leader of the ex-Soviet republic is the main opponent of Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko. Tsikhanouskaya went into exile in Lithuania after the August 9 presidential election in Belarus, which election officials claimed that Lukashenko won in a landslide.

Opposition figures and some poll workers say the results were fraudulent and tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets to protest.

Late last month, Tsikhanouskaya met with French President Emmanuel Macron, who has been pushing for European mediation in the Belarus political crisis. The European Union said last month it does not recognize Lukashenko as president of Belarus.

Lukashenko, who has ruled the country with an iron fist since 1994, has sought to crackdown on protesters.

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