The Belarusian opposition is not controlled from abroad, former Belarusian presidential candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya claimed Tuesday in her Telegram channel ahead of the meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
"The opposition is not controlled from abroad. Not controlled from Russia," Tikhanovskaya said.
According to the former presidential candidate, two months ago, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said the activities of her husband Sergei Tikhanovsky, who is currently in custody over charges of mass protests organization, were being coordinated from Russia, TASS reports.
Now, President Lukashenko "changed his mind and accuses Europe," Tikhanovskaya added.
On Friday, German Cabinet Deputy Spokeswoman Ulrike Demmer announced that Angela Merkel would meet with Tikhanovskaya in Berlin on October 6. The meeting will focus on the situation in Belarus in the wake of the presidential election.
Nationwide demonstrations have engulfed Belarus following the August 9 presidential election. According to the Central Election Commission’s official results, incumbent President Alexander Lukashenko won by a landslide, garnering 80.10% of the vote. His closest rival in the race, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, came in second, with 10.12% of the ballot. However, she refused to recognize the election’s outcome, and left Belarus for Lithuania. After the results of the exit polls were announced late on August 9, mass protests erupted in downtown Minsk and other Belarusian cities. During the early post-election period, the rallies snowballed into fierce clashes between the protesters and police. The current unrest is being cheered on by the opposition’s Coordination Council, which has been beating the drum for more protests. In response, the Belarusian authorities have castigated the ongoing turmoil and demanded that these unauthorized demonstrations be stopped.