Belarusian Opposition Leader Calls on EU for Support Against Lukashenko Regime
European Support for Belarus’s Democratic Fight
Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, the exiled opposition leader of Belarus, has implored the European Parliament to rally behind Belarus’s bid for democracy and to thwart the potential of the nation being ceded to Putin as a diplomatic gift. She proposed the creation of a memorandum with the European Parliament before the 2024 elections to establish the groundwork for cooperation with a democratic Belarus.
Tikhanovskaya voiced the struggle of Belarusians for a democratic nation and argued that Lukashenko deserves to be tried at the International Court of Justice, not a seat in the international community. She announced that next year, the democratic forces of Belarus will start issuing their own passports. These will serve as travel documents for Belarusians in exile, and shortly, she will request EU governments to acknowledge these new documents.
European Parliament’s Stand on Belarus Crisis
The President of the European Parliament, Metsola, emphasized that Belarusians should live in freedom, devoid of autocracy and oppression. She committed to ongoing support for the democratic forces of Belarus and active involvement in shaping the European Union’s response to the ongoing political crisis in Belarus. She underscored the EU’s need to extend sanctions against the Lukashenko regime and to remember its actions.
New Resolution Adopted on EU-Belarus Relations
The Parliament also adopted a new resolution on EU relations with Belarus. This resolution supports the stance of the country’s democratic political parties concerning Belarus’s European perspective. The resolution urges the Belarusian regime to free all political prisoners and strongly condemns Minsk’s involvement in Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine.
The resolution text expresses grave concern that Belarus is under Moscow’s control, effectively making it a Russian satellite state, hosting Russia-controlled tactical nuclear weapons. It demands stricter EU sanctions against Belarus while emphasizing that the recent arrival of Russian Wagner Group mercenaries in the country presents new security risks to Ukraine, Belarus’s EU neighbors, and the European Union as a whole.
Increasing Pressures and Calls for Sanctions
Throughout the political crisis in Belarus, there has been increasing international pressure for sanctions against the Lukashenko regime. This pressure is not only from opposition forces within the country but also from the international community that condemns the violent crackdown on peaceful protestors and the suppression of democratic movements.
The opposition leader’s call for EU support comes at a crucial time, with the EU already having penalized several Belarusian officials. However, the opposition believes that these measures are not enough and that the sanctions should be extended to include the people and companies supporting Lukashenko, as well as institutions that are seen as pillars of his regime.
The unfolding political crisis in Belarus is a testament to the struggle for democracy in a country under autocratic rule. With growing international attention and escalating calls for sanctions against the Lukashenko regime, it remains to be seen how the situation will evolve and what role the international community, particularly the EU, will play in supporting the democratic aspirations of the Belarusian people.
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