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Kremlin doesn’t view Tikhanovskaya’s wanted warrant as political persecution

Russia has no questions to Tikhanovskaya, the Kremlin spokesman said
Svetlana Tikhanovskaya Valery Sharifulin/TASS
Svetlana Tikhanovskaya
© Valery Sharifulin/TASS

MOSCOW, October 16. /TASS/. Law enforcement agencies of Russia have no issues with Belarusian former presidential candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya but her being put on the inter-state wanted list is not viewed as politically motivated by Moscow, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters Friday.

"We have no questions to Tikhanovskaya, we did not file a wanted warrant for her, it was done by Belarusian law enforcement agents. In turn, we have the same unified system and joint responsibilities with them," the Kremlin spokesman noted.

When asked if the Tikhanovskaya situation falls under the category when a state believes prosecution of a person by another state is politically motivated, Peskov noted, "No, it doesn’t." "The prosecution is carried out by the Belarusian law enforcement, therefore, you’d probably better ask them," he added, commenting on the question whether Moscow sees the criminal case against the former presidential candidate as a political one.

Tikhanovskaya ran in the Belarusian presidential elections that took place on August 9, 2020. According to the official results, she racked up a little over 10% of the ballots, finishing second. Tikhanovskaya rejected the election results. Amid this backdrop, the country plunged into mass protests of people disagreeing with these results. Tikhanovskaya fled Belarus and initiated creation of the Coordination Council of the opposition, a body that seeks a rerun of the elections.

On August 19, the Belarusian Prosecutor General’s Office launched a criminal case for establishing the council, treating it as public calls for seizing state power or engaging in actions aimed at undermining national security via the Internet or mass media outlets.