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Statkevich aims for presidency, offers agreement to Lukashenka

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Mikalai Statkevich

The Belarusian National Congress has nominated Mikalai Statkevich as a candidate for the presidency of Belarus in the 2020 elections. This decision came as a result of the BNC council's vote on January 17. In an interview with Euroradio, Statkevich notes that his election campaign will begin within the next few weeks.

“This decision is not so much about elections as it is about freedom. This is a campaign for the return of fair elections to win the real elections. This is for peaceful changes. Otherwise, without fair elections, Belarus may be in a situation of social explosion,” the politician says.

Statkevich’s election campaign will be conducted in various ways: in terms of program, it will be in the form of protests, through the creation of a broad initiative group. The first step will be the publication of the candidate’s program to be timed with a protest rally.

"There are no restrictions under the Constitution"

The veteran of the Belarusian opposition feels confident despite outstanding conviction:

“Under the Constitution, there are no restrictions. It means I can [run for presidency]. There are three reasons why I can't run, and a separate clause that says there can be no other restrictions. And according to their Electoral Code I can’t run because there is an outstanding conviction. And this also influenced the decision of the National Assembly's Council. In our strategy, this factor will be widely used, as people are actually deprived of Lukashenka's main opponent. And, it is his main opponent, these are not my words, so we can say that people are deprived of the right to choose an honest government."

The politician also expects great support from the population, because he believes that “it’s time to think about victory” and look for an alternative to the current head of state.

The veteran of the Belarusian politics will turn to other political parties for support in order to be able to nominate a single candidate:

“We will address other people and candidates today to support the candidacy from the BNC. Honestly, the opinion of non-opposition parties, which for some reason call themselves oppositional, does not affect anything. We have a strange situation when political parties have moved away from politics and began to engage in some kind of social, historical projects, etc. But they do not fulfill their function -- to criticize the authorities and fight them. And when in the country all power is in the hands of one person, they are simply obliged to criticize this person and fight him, push him out of power. These organizations, if they have the courage to criticize someone, it is only some secondary official or restaurant owner. "

“Belarusians will not swallow another elegant victory”

The only person with whom Mikalai Statkevich would come to the debates is Alyaksandr Lukashenka. The politician says that he has been debating with the head of state in absentia, and for a long time. And on the occasion of the start of his participation in the election campaign, he decided to make an appeal to Lukashenka:

"I am addressing him directly. Let's solve the problem peacefully! If you at least think about the country, then bring back fair elections! Lift convictions from honest people, and let's meet in fair elections. Belarusians want real elections, they will not swallow another elegant victory! "

If Lukashenka refuses to hold fair elections, Statkevich promises that it will be worse. "Let's have an agreement!" he urged the head of state.

More news in the daily news show Eurozoom's podcast (17.01.2019).