EU wants Minsk to treat opposition, Polish minority better

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The Belarusian authorities' attitude to opponents and the Polish minority will be a litmus test for the European Union when it will be assessing changes toward democratization, Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski told opposition politicians from
Belarus/>/> on Tuesday.

Sikorski met with Vintsuk Vyachorka, Anatol Lyaukovich, Syarhey Kalyakin and Anatol Lyabedzka, co-chairmen of the United Pro-democratic Forces (UPF), former presidential candidates Alyaksandr Kazulin and Alyaksandr Milinkevich, and Pavel Sevyarynets, co-chairman of the Belarusian Christian Democracy organizing committee.

The meeting participants discussed the situation in Belarus/> in the context of the September 23-28 parliamentary elections and a thaw between Minsk/> and
Brussels/>/>. The UPF leaders presented their common position with regard to a roadmap for the Belarusian authorities, RFE/RL Belarus Service reported.

The opposition leaders insist that the authorities should make changes to the Electoral Code, create equal conditions for the private and state media, give the opposition access to the state media, liberalize conditions for political parties and non-governmental organizations, and decriminalize political activities.