Lukashenka orders justice officials to deal with alternative vote counting

Аuthorities talk citizens out of participating in alternative vote counting: advertisement at polling station in Minsk. Photo: Belsat

On August 6, Belarusian president Alyaksandr Lukashenka convened a meeting on ensuring the security of the election campaign.

In the course of the event, he ordered justice officials to assess the legitimacy of the alternative vote counting in the 2020 presidential election.

“Another topic I would like to bring up is the alternative vote counting on election day. The Prosecutor General’s Office and courts should assess the legal status of such initiatives. This should be done in courts if such appeals are submitted,” state-run news agency BelTA quotes him.

According to Lukashenka, Belarusians should be provided with the opportunity to vote ‘calmly, in a festive manner’, without fear of any bashing or impinging on personal choice.

The incumbent leader also instructed the corresponding authorities to protect ‘officers of state who work for the country for free’ and to bring to justice those who ‘insulted and intimidated civil servants, the military, members of election commissions, government officials’.

In late July, the Decent People initiative, as well representatives of the united headquarters of alternative candidates (Svyatlana Tsikhanouskaya, Veranika Tsapkala, Maryia Kalesnikava), announced the launch of Golos (Vote), a website which is designed to protect the people’s votes in the upcoming election. Belarusians are invited to send a photo of their ballot paper; all ballots are then to be processed, which will make an unofficial counting of votes possible. As of August 6, about 835,000 voters have regirestered on the platform.

Complaints unwelcome? Independent election observer detained in Minsk