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Ukraine joins western states in non-recognizing Lukashenka as president after “secret” inauguration

Photo: Telegram channel “Pul Pervogo”
Ukraine joins western states in non-recognizing Lukashenka as president after “secret” inauguration

On 23 September, self-proclaimed president-elect of Belarus Alyaksandr Lukashenka was sworn in at a “secret inauguration” that was not announced in advance. Apparently, the “last dictator of Europe” was afraid of the reaction of disgruntled Belarusians who are protesting the rigged election for the 45th day in a row, withstanding the mass detentions and police brutality.

As riot police cracked down on protests that erupted after the secret ceremony in the Belarusian capital Minsk, where at least 197 were detained at publication time, according to the Viasna human rights center, leaders of many countries around the world announced they will not be recognizing the Belarusian strongman as president. Ukraine joined in, albeit cautiously.

Ukrainian Minister of Foreign Affairs Dmytro Kuleba made a carefully-worded statement that hints at non-recognition of the inauguration yet addresses Belarusian accusations of Ukrainian interference into the election:

Germany does not recognize Alexander Lukashenko as president of Belarus even after his inauguration on Wednesday, government spokesman Steffen Seibert said in a stateent.

Foreign ministers of several EU countries also commented on the ceremony, declaring their official position. Urmas Reinsalu, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Estonia reacted on the inauguration of Alexander Lukashenko on his Twitter account, calling it illegitimate:

Linas Linkevicius, Lithuania‘s Minister of Foreign Affairs, called the inauguration “a farce”:

Ivan Korcok, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of Slovakia:

Edgars Rinkēvičs, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Latvia:

Tomáš Petříček, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Czechia:

Jeppe Kofod, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Denmark:

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Poland:

The US Senate Foreign Affairs Committee also stated Lukashenka is not the President of Belarus:

The Canadian Foreign Minister François-Philippe Champagne was even more resolute; he also announced that Canada will donate $600,000 to support civil society in Belarus.

Mark Rutte, Prime Minister of The Netherlands, also stated that his country does not recognize Lukashenka as President of Belarus, De Telegraaf reported.

Belarusians responded with a flashmob with the flags of countries who did not recognize Lukashenka as President of Belarus:

Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, the wife of a jailed blogger who ran for president instead of him and is widely believed to have won, called the so-called inauguration “a farce” and stated that his orders to law enforcement agencies should not be obeyed.[0]=AZXMhNsxBTGHt7w-or885_JHWW9vXgmUBFQ1NWuF66aCW7O46SGVBpNvqPzmbzQoYbuXZ2Xysux876i7MfOIVjZk04k8lvf6dVpF-7ud90d9DLkeP4R4KfA7ibmI6jwlFCZAWIj5kbJbp4kOtgxYCna3gL0CQ7MhlAaU9Yv0gqMNpmjg97DIOml41tnKvGllwb8&__tn__=%2CO%2CP-R

Pavel Latushka, a former diplomat and member of the Presidium of the Coordination Council established to facilitate a peaceful transfer of power in Belarus, commented:

Where are the jubilant citizens? Where is the diplomatic corps? To be honest, it looks more like a thieves’ meeting for the coronation of one more crime boss. From now on, he has ceased to be the President of Belarus.”

Latushka, like Tsikhanouskaya, left the country after intimidation by Belarusian law enforcement agencies. Most of the opposition has either been jailed or is exiled.

Note. Starting from today, we will be referring to Alyaksandr Lukashenka as the self-proclaimed president of Belarus.

How Alyaksandr Lukashenka stole the Belarus presidential election

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