Russia removes Belarusian opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya from wanted list

WION Web Team
Moscow, Russia Published: Jun 15, 2021, 03:54 PM(IST)

Belarusian opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

Tsikhanouskaya fled into exile last year after Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko launched a crackdown on protesters who accused him of rigging his 2020 re-election, a vote Tsikhanouskaya's supporters say she won

Russian police have removed Belarusian opposition politician Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya from their wanted list at the initiative of the Belarusian authorities.

It comes as Putin and Biden are to meet at a villa in Geneva on Wednesday with tensions high over a long list of disputes, from cyberattacks and election meddling to human rights violations.

Tsikhanouskaya fled into exile last year after Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko launched a crackdown on protesters who accused him of rigging his 2020 re-election, a vote Tsikhanouskaya's supporters say she won.

She later appeared on Russia's wanted list, something Russia's Interior Ministry said had happened through a mechanism outlined in a regional bloc that both Russia and Belarus are members of.

The exiled opposition politician could have faced up to 5 years in jail in Belarus if was detained and found guilty.

Belarus has been shaken by unprecedented mass protests since the disputed re-election last year of Alexander Lukashenko, who has ruled since 1994 with the support of Russia.

Lukashenko has responded with a crackdown on protesters, jailing many and forcing many others into exile.

Security forces have detained more than 13,000 people during a post-election crackdown, some of whom have been later freed. Lukashenko's key political opponents are either in jail or have fled abroad.

(With inputs from agencies)

Read in App