MOSCOW, October 15. /TASS/. Moscow calls on German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas to refrain from interfering in Belarus’ domestic affairs, either in word or in deed, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday.
"We call on the German foreign minister to refrain from interfering in domestic affairs of our union nation, either in word or in deed. We are convinced that the Belarusians need no instructions either from Berlin or any other capital city to reach accord on socially important matters they are concerned about," she said. "Aggressive interventions of the collective West in the internal political processes in third countries only entail the emergence of more crisis foci on the global map."
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.