‘Safe platform’: Belarusian opposition politician Pavel Latushka to set up new party

Pavel Latushka in Minsk. 17 August 2020. Photo: ТК / Vot-tak.tv / Belsat.eu

On Thursday, Pavel Latushka, Head of the People’s Anti-Crisis Administration (PACA) and a former Belarusian diplomat, announced establishing a new political party. According to him, such initiative is also a current-day instrument of pressure which demonstrates their absolutely being confident of victory.

In his opinion, there should be a parliamentary-presidential form of government in a new Belarus, because it is ‘the best way to avoid the recurrence of any dictatorship’. The PACA leader stressed the importance of creating the political framework even before Alyaksandr Lukashenka‘s stepping down so that the opposition forces could be able to swiftly react to a ‘political vacuum which will rise after that’.

“We are actually working in proactive mode. We realise that it is hardly possible to have our party registered in a given setting, but we are preparing in advance to do so as soon as the political and legal conditions in the country appear. We will soon present a safe platform for uniting like-minded people into the would-be party,” Pavel Latushka said.

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The politician also noted that the dictator might set up his own party and additional rubber-stamping pocket parties in order to show off ‘pseudo-democracy’.

“PACA will continue to focus on putting pressure on the regime, forcing it to fulfil the conditions of Belarusian society and pushing it to negotiations, as well as on ensuring stability during the transition period. It will stop working as soon as the country gets a new, legally elected president,” he said.

The new party will contribute to building a new Belarus within the multiparty system, the politician stressed.

In late March, the team of might-have-been presidential candidate and former banker Viktar Babaryka published the appeal he sent from the KGB prison. The jailed politician urged his adherers to ‘go the whole way’ and found the party Razam (‘Together’).

Pavel Latushka is a former minister of culture of Belarus; he also served as Belarus’ Ambassador to Poland and France. In March 2019, he was appointed director of the Yanka Kupala National Academic Theatre. He lost his job after he openly supported anti-government protesters, including his subordinates who took part in rallies, and condemned police abuse and violence against dissidents.

Pavel Latushka also joined the board of the opposition Coordination Council which was set up by Tsikhanouskaya and her associates as part of taking urgent measures to restore law and order in Belarus as well as to ensure the transfer of power in the country. Belarus’ Prosecutor General opened a criminal case over establishing the Council, naming it a ‘threat to national security’. In early September, Belarusian special services gave Latushka an unpleasant choice: either he leaves the country, or a criminal case will be instituted against him. Since late October, he has been in charge of the People’s Anti-Crisis Administration (PACA) in exile.

In mid January, Latushka said in a video message that the Belarusian opposition was going to push for recognising the Lukashenka regime as terrorism on the global stage.

Pavel Latushka: Opposition to raise question of recognising Lukashenka regime as terrorism