BELARUS OPPOSITION LEADER ADMITS ‘LOSING THE STREET’ TO REGIME
Updated: Feb 23
Six months on from Belarus' disputed presidential election, opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya conceded the democracy movement has suffered a temporary defeat, Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa) reported.
"I have to admit, we have lost the street," she said in an interview with the Swiss newspaper Le Temps. "We don't have the means to counter the regime's violence against the protesters." The government, Tikhanovskaya said, has the weapons and has the power. "Yes, it looks at the moment like we have lost," she said.
Belarus has been in the grips of a domestic political crisis since August 9 presidential elections in which Alexander Lukashenko declared victory with 80.1 percent of the vote.
The election of Lukashenko, who was been in power for 26 years, was widely seen as rigged and provoked months of huge street protests.
The opposition believes Tikhanovskaya to be the true winner. Those protests have since lost momentum, chilled by mass arrests and harsh winter weather.