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Belarusian security chief says assassination attempt on candidate Tikhanovskaya was foiled

According to the chief of the country’s State Security Committee, 120 officers were engaged in ensuring security of the united headquarters

MINSK, August 10. /TASS/. Belarusian security services have prevented an assassination attempt on presidential candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, chief of the country’s State Security Committee (KGB) Valery Vakulchik said on Monday.

"We received information from the so-called united [opposition] headquarters that they were afraid of provocations and an attempt on Tikhanovskaya’s life," he told the ONT television channel.

According to Vakulchik, ahead of that the Interior Ministry’s anti-extremism division intercepted a message reading that a "sacred sacrifice is needed."

"The sender has already been identified and will soon be detained," he said. "This incident was immediately reported to the head of state. Notably, we took this information absolutely seriously. Under the corresponding instruction of the head of state, I took a decision to second 120 well-trained officers to ensure security of the united headquarters. They tried to stay unnoticed but their presence was obvious."

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said earlier on Monday that law enforcers had protected not only rank and file people during riots but also the election team of his rival, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya. In his words, law enforcers ensured protection of some 60 people, including "opposition journalists," "all through the night."