A member of the Coordinating Council, the opposition in Belarus, has gone to neighbouring Poland for consultations with parliamentarians and government representatives. Afterwards he would like to travel to the Lithuanian capital Vilnius.
According to a newspaper in Belarus, the member of the opposition, Pavel Latushko, stressed that he had not fled from the authorities. In any case, he would like to return to Minsk.
It has not been announced what Latushko is going to do in Vilnius, but it is assumed that he will visit the Belarusian opposition leader Svetlana Tichanovskaya, who was forced to leave for neighbouring Lithuania a few weeks ago after the election results. From there she is now trying to continue her fight against President Lukashenko.
Suspected ballot box fraud
Lukashenko says that he won last month’s presidential election, but it is generally assumed that there has been voting fraud. Opponents of Lukashenko have been taking to the streets to protest for weeks. At least three people died and hundreds were injured during the demonstrations. Many were arrested and abused in captivity
Pavel Latushko was director of an important theatre in the Belarusian capital Minsk. He used to be minister of culture. Recently he united with other opposition members in the Coordination Council, which wants to work towards a peaceful transfer of power.
The authorities in Belarus have opened a criminal investigation into the Coordination Council. Some participants, apart from opposition leader Svetlana Tichanovskaya including Nobel Prize winner Svetlana Alexeyevich, are accused of undermining national security. President Lukashenko therefore announced earlier legal proceedings against the opposition members.