KIEV, September 10./TASS/. Members of the Belarusian opposition Coordination Council, Anton Rodnenkov and Ivan Kravtsov, said on Thursday that they planned to return to Belarus from Ukraine within two or three weeks.
The return to Belarus "is a possibility to destabilize the regime through non-standard actions," they said in an interview with Ukraine’s Strana news outlet. "Our effectiveness here [in Ukraine] will be declining, since it is important to be at the scene. It is difficult to take part in a revolution remotely," said Kravtsov, adding that the return was planned within two or three weeks.
According to Anton Rodnenkov, before getting back to Belarus, they are planning to head to Lithuania and Poland to work from there. The opposition figures said they realized that they could be arrested upon the return, so they wanted to make the return dramatic. "We want to make our return to Belarus more impressive, and this requires preparations," Rodnenkov said. "So far we have no exact plan. But we want this to be pubic and manifest," he added.
The two once again specified that they were not planning to ask for political asylum in Ukraine, since they were in Ukraine "within the framework of a political campaign".
Earlier, they told a news conference that they had crossed the border between Belarus and Ukraine legally and of their own free will. They said that prior to that they had been detained by unidentified persons. Besides, they said that a member of the Belarusian opposition’s Coordination Council Maria Kolesnikova, also taken to the border with Ukraine forcibly, did not want to leave Belarus and that is why she tore her passport.
On Tuesday, Belarus-1 state TV channel reported on its Telegram channel that Kolesnikova had been detained while trying to illegally cross the border with Ukraine. According to the Belarusian State Border Committee, she was going through border control together with the Council’s spokesman Anton Rodnenkov and executive secretary Ivan Kravtsov. The two men passed the control and later headed to Kiev.
Later, the Belarusian Investigative Committee reported that Kolesnikova had been arrested under the case of takeover appeals.