A number of United States officials expressed solidarity with the protesters in Belarus, which began on the night of August 10. Thus, the head of the US Department of State Mike Pompeo called the elections held in the republic unfree and unfair. According to him, Minsk law enforcement officers should refrain from using force against the protesters.
“As friends of Belarus, we support the independence and sovereignty of this country, as well as the striving of the Belarusian people for a democratic prosperous future. To achieve these goals, the government of Belarus must by deeds prove its commitment to democratic processes and its respect for human rights, "- said in a statement Pompeo, published on the website of the State Department.
A similar point of view was expressed by the Democratic candidate, former US Vice President Joseph Biden. On his page in the social network Medium, he condemned the “use of flash-noise grenades, tear gas and rubber bullets” by the Belarusian police.
“I stand in solidarity with those who call for transparent and accurate vote counting and the release of all political prisoners. I also call on President Lukashenko to respect the rights of peaceful demonstrators and refrain from further violence, ”Biden wrote.
- Joseph Biden
- © Leah Millis
In his opinion, the election results in the republic were falsified. He also believes that at present the Belarusian authorities are grossly violating the democratic rights of citizens.
Biden's associate in the Democratic Party, Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Adam Schiff, recalled that Belarus is called “the last dictatorship of Europe under the leadership of the brutal and corrupt Lukashenka’s regime. He called on the US authorities and "democracies around the world" to support the protests in Belarus.
In addition, the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Eliot Engel, and the Republican leader in this committee, Michael McCall, expressed solidarity with the protesters in Belarus and criticized Lukashenko.
Recall, according to preliminary data from the CEC of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko won the support of 80.23% of voters, and his closest rival Svetlana Tikhanovskaya received 9.9% of the vote. The politician left the republic and is currently in Lithuania. As reported earlier in the KGB of Belarus, an attempt was being prepared against her.
We remind that political opponents of Alexander Lukashenko do not recognize the results announced by the Belarusian CEC. Unauthorized protests are taking place in Minsk and other cities, accompanied by clashes with law enforcement officers. On the facts of the riots, the Investigative Committee of the Republic opened more than 20 criminal cases.
To date, one person has become a victim of the confrontation. According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, in the west of Minsk a man tried to throw an unidentified explosive device in the direction of the police, but it detonated in his hand. The protester died from his wounds.
"Will continue to escalate the situation"
As Pavel Feldman, deputy director of the Institute for Strategic Studies and Forecasts of the RUDN University, explained in an interview with RT, in the situation with the protests in Belarus, the United States acts by the same stereotyped methods as during the unrest in other regions of the world - in Hong Kong and in the center of Kiev during “ euromaidan ".
“In any protests and riots, there are acts of violence from both sides. But the United States has always practiced a one-sided approach to unrest in those regions where it is beneficial for them to sway the situation. Most likely, the States will use a standard set of methods to aggravate the situation in Belarus. One of them is informational pressure to form the image of Alyaksandr Lukashenka as a dictator, ”Feldman argues.
From the expert's point of view, it is beneficial for Washington "to change the current foreign policy orientation of Minsk," which in recent years has been actively building up economic and military cooperation with China.
- Clashes in the center of Minsk
- RIA News
- © Ilya Pitalev
According to Andrey Koshkin, head of the Department of Political Science and Sociology at the Plekhanov Russian University of Economics, the main supporters of the practice of pressure on Belarus among the American establishment are democrats.
“Undoubtedly, Washington will continue to escalate the situation around Belarus. The purpose of this intervention is to sow political chaos in the republic, deprive it of its sovereignty and, as a result, subordinate it to its rule, as was done earlier with Ukraine. The first violin in this process, apparently, will be played by the democrats, under whom the “Arab Spring” and “Euromaidan” took place by no coincidence, ”predicts Koshkin.
Along with the United States, the leadership of the European Union came out against the policy of the official Minsk. EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Josep Borrell wrote on his Twitter page that the Belarusian authorities should stop using force against the protesters. He also said that in the near future the European Union should agree on a common position on the events in Belarus.
Earlier, Warsaw and Vilnius came up with an initiative to hold an extraordinary EU summit to assess the situation in the republic. However, at the moment the European Union has not commented on this proposal. Meanwhile, the European Commission has already expressed serious doubts about the reliability of the results of the presidential elections in Belarus.
Pavel Feldman believes that the prerequisites are being created for the consolidation of Western states against the figure of Alexander Lukashenko. This will allow the US and the EU to "significantly increase the pressure" on the official Minsk.
“In addition to criticism and condemnation, it is quite possible to expect certain ultimatums from the West, similar to those that Viktor Yanukovych faced in his time. I think that the West will form a united front for pressure and interference in the affairs of Belarus. Also, new sanctions will probably be introduced against Minsk, ”Feldman said.
"Attempt to destabilize"
Experts suggest that, in addition to the West, attempts to interfere in the internal affairs of Belarus can be expected from its closest neighbors, including Ukraine. According to analysts, Kiev could already begin to act in this direction, organizing a provocation with the detention of 33 Russians. Earlier, the media reported that the SBU was directly related to this incident.
However, to date, Kiev did not give harsh assessments of the events in Belarus, but did not support Alexander Lukashenko either. So, on the evening of August 9, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky wrote on his Facebook page that Belarusians “are going through difficult times now” and are trying to determine “the vector of their further development”.
Warsaw and Vilnius take a more critical view of the situation in the neighboring state. For example, the Polish Foreign Ministry does not exclude the possibility of imposing sanctions against the leadership of Belarus.
In addition, in their joint statement on August 9, the presidents of Poland and Lithuania Andrzej Duda and Gitanas Nauseda called on the Belarusian authorities to observe "basic democratic standards."
- Protest action in the center of Minsk
- RIA News
- © Victor Tolochko
Alexander Lukashenko, in turn, has already accused a number of Western countries of interfering in the internal affairs of the republic.
“We have recorded (you know this as a former intelligence officer) calls from abroad. There were calls from Poland, Great Britain and the Czech Republic, they controlled our, excuse me, sheep: they do not understand what they are doing, and they are already beginning to control them, ”Lukashenko said on August 10 at a meeting with the head of the CIS observer mission, Sergei Lebedev.
The Czech Republic and Poland denied these claims. Great Britain condemned the actions of the Belarusian security forces, but did not comment on the accusations against it.
The United Nations Organization did not ignore the events in Belarus. The official representative of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Elizabeth Throssell, said about the "deep concern" about the situation in the republic. She recalled that the organization has repeatedly appealed to the official Minsk with an appeal “to ensure full observance of freedom of speech, the right to peaceful assembly and association”.
The republic's Foreign Ministry reacted to numerous accusations from Western politicians of infringement of democracy in Belarus. The department called it "absolutely unacceptable" that "how quickly a number of European officials made the most important political statements for our country, even without trying to objectively understand and really assess the situation."
“Some high-profile conclusions at the highest and high levels are based on one-sided information and outright lies,” the Belarusian Foreign Ministry says.
The Foreign Ministry also announced its readiness "to present concrete irrefutable facts that reveal the background of current events, including about interference from abroad."
According to Andrey Koshkin, in Europe one of the main beneficiaries from the destabilization of the situation in Belarus is Poland. According to the expert, in this direction Warsaw is a loyal ally of Washington.
“In this situation, Poland will seek to pull the center of support for American foreign policy onto itself. Increasing influence in Belarus through interference in its affairs is in line with Warsaw's excessive political ambitions in Europe. There is no doubt that in an attempt to destabilize Belarus, Poland will follow all instructions from Washington, ”Koshkin said.