Lukashenka’s might-have-been rival takes children, leaves Belarus

Valery Tsapkala, a participant in the 2020 election campaign, took his children and left Belarus for Moscow overnight into Friday, a trusted source told Belsat.

When reached by TUT.BY, his wife Veranika Tsapkala said that her husband had departed from Belarus in secret.

Veranika Tsapkala. Photo: Iryna Arakhouskaya /

Credible sources provided us with information that the authorities were going to use a far-fetched pretext and detain my husband. We were unaware of any details, but two days ago prosecutors came to my children’s school and asked the teachers to file complaints. As I see it, they have launched proceedings to deprive me of parental rights,” Veranika Tsapkala stressed.

The woman decided to stay in Belarus in order to continue working at the united election teams’ headquarters.

Election teams of Babaryka, Tsapkala and Tsikhanouskaya unite

Later, Valery Tsapkala has confirmed that he arrived in Russia. According to him, they got information from sources at the State Security Committee (KGB) about the imminence of his being arrested. The politician added that the option of his return to Belarus was not ruled out:

Of course, I intend to go back to the country after the election. Everything will depend on its outcome, but if the situation is acute in Belarus, I will come before August 9.”

Earlier, presidential candidate Svyatlana Tsikhanouskaya had her children moved away from Belarus to the European Union on the back of the threats she got.

Presidential wannabe Tsikhanouskaya: ‘They threatened to jail me, take kids away’

On June 29, the Belarusian Interior Ministry launched a probe into ‘illegal activities’ in which Valery Tsapkala, a founder of the Belarusian Hi Tech park and former diplomat, was allegedly involved.

On June 30, the Central Election Commission announced that Valery Tsapkala had not collected the necessary number of signatures to become a presidential candidate. The commission approved only 75,000 out of 160,000 signatures and said that Tsapkala would no longer take part in the presidential race. In turn, Tsapkala wrote on his Twitter that he had no intention to give up and would fight for each signature.

EU comments on non-registration of presidential candidates