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GreeceGREEK HOUSE DAVOS 2024 - Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya urges support for Belarus in...

GREEK HOUSE DAVOS 2024 – Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya urges support for Belarus in its battle for democracy

Hellenic News of America
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Belarus is the perfect example of what can happen to countries that neglect democratic institutions, said Belarusian opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, speaking at the Greek House Davos Forum in Switzerland. For 30 years, she said on Monday, there have been no free elections in Belarus, as the dictator Alexander Lukashenko has abolished Parliament, independent justice and the media.

“My country,” she said, “has become a police state, where elections are a simple process, without any meaning or the possibility of real choice.”

She referred to the Belarusian uprising in 2020, which demanded change after years of mismanagement and oppression. Her husband had then decided to stand in the elections against Lukashenko, but was immediately imprisoned and she had taken it upon herself to continue the fight in his place, she said.

Belarusians, Tsikhanouskaya said, gave her a decisive victory in the election but the dictator refused to give up power and proceeded to terrorise the people, with thousands of arrests. She has not heard from her husband for almost a year and there are, she noted, rumours that he is dead, while last week it was announced that another political prisoner had died in prison.

Despite the terror, she added, Belarusians continued to resist and democratic institutions have been formed in exile. “We are preparing for a new window of opportunity,” she said, expressing her belief that the dictatorship in her country will collapse.

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For this reason, she added, “we are working on reforms to ensure that there will be no dictatorship again and that there will be strong democratic institutions.” Already, she noted, “we have designed the new constitution”, economic and political reforms that will help integrate Belarus into the European economy.

Only by joining the European Union can Belarus become a truly independent, prosperous and democratic country, she added.

At the beginning of 2024, a year when more than half of the world’s population will be called to vote in elections, Tsikhanouskaya stressed that democracy should be supported as the history of Belarus shows that it is easy to lose and very difficult to regain. For this reason, she asked for support and solidarity towards Belarus and Ukraine.

In Europe, she said, the fate of democracy is being decided in Belarus and Ukraine, which are not only fighting for freedom and repelling Russia’s imperial ambitions but also for the very values of democracy, such as human rights, the rule of law and freedom of speech. This battle, she added, will decide the future for all of Europe.

The ANA-MPA is a Media Partner of the Greek House Davos Forum. The work of the Forum is transmitted by ANA-MPA at the address: .

SOURCE; ANA-MPA

The copyrights for these articles are owned by the Hellenic News of America. They may not be redistributed without the permission of the owner. The opinions expressed by our authors do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Hellenic News of America and its representatives.

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