Belarus election challenger demands Lukashenko 'hand over power'

AFP Minsk, Belarus Aug 10, 2020, 03.10 PM(IST)

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko delivers his annual address to the Belarusian people and the National Assembly in Minsk, Belarus Photograph:( Reuters )

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She denounced authorities for the crackdown saying police had used "disproportionate measures" against protesters and called disruptions to the internet "a crime"

The main challenger in Belarus's presidential election on Monday rejected results showing an overwhelming victory for President Alexander Lukashenko and demanded authorities transfer power to the opposition.

"Yesterday the voters made their choice but the authorities did not hear us, they have broken with the people," Svetlana Tikhanovskaya told a news conference after police dispersed crowds of protesters overnight.

Also read: Lukashenko wins Belarus presidential vote with 79.7%: Official exit poll

"The authorities should think about how to peacefully hand over power to us," she said. "I consider myself the winner of this election."

She denounced authorities for the crackdown saying police had used "disproportionate measures" against protesters and called disruptions to the internet "a crime". 

"We have seen that the authorities are trying to hold on to their positions by force," she said.

"No matter how much we asked authorities not to turn on their own people, we were not listened to."