Lukashenko addresses early elections ‘in the margins’ of constitutional reform

Lukashenko addresses early elections ‘in the margins’ of constitutional reform
Credit: Belga

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko addressed the possibility of holding a debate on early presidential elections in an interview with Russian media circulated on Wednesday.

Lukashenko did not want to give a timetable, because in his opinion such an election should go hand in hand with his planned amendment of the constitution.

"If we change the constitution, we can provide for presidential elections on the fringes. And I am tending to early elections, I am not ruling them out,” he said.

The subject would be discussed at a meeting in December or January, according to Lukashenko.

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Lukashenko has faced demonstrations since his controversial re-election in August, but he systematically refused to negotiate with his opponents, his only concession being a vague project that includes a constitutional reform that should slightly reduce his privileges as head of state.

In his interview with the Russian media, he also insisted that he does not want to resign under pressure. "I am not a coward, I am not afraid. I did not run away and I will not run away. And my children are not going anywhere either,” he said.

In the meantime, almost all important opposition figures have been arrested or forced into exile in the course of the last few weeks.

The Brussels Times

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