On the campaign in Brest imposed a mass rally in support of Svetlana Tikhonov, and also the struggle of local residents against the occurrence near the town battery factory.
At the election of the President of Belarus, Brest was in the national trend. According to the Chairman of the Brest regional election Commission Alexander Koleda at noon on August 9, and across the country, elections in the region were held, as voted, more than half of registered voters.
“This is only a good indicator: I don’t remember the turnout exceeded 50 percent already by twelve o’clock Sunday afternoon in the elections,” – said the head of the regional electoral Commission. In his opinion, for the first time in the modern history of Belarus met the interests of the authorities and the opposition: together they urged people to go to the polls.
Independent observers place on sites not found
Independent election observers are not so optimistic about official figures about the turnout, especially in the period of early voting. “In the early days of this vote I was able to attend only during the procedure of sealing ballot boxes, and then the Chairman of the Commission was required to leave the area and call the police,” he told DW observer Yury Zhydovich.
The reason for the expulsion from the polling station was a reference to the resolution of the Central election Commission, according to which due to the unfavorable epidemiological situation in the early voting can be observed more than three people.
“Those were always from among employees of the same school, where is the polling station”, – added Yuras Zhydovich and said that he doubted the figures announced turnout of voters.
When the school election is a “regime object”
Another observer – 65-the summer pensioner Anatoly Stepanovich – not only had no place at the polling station, but also on the territory of school №20 in Brest. The administration of the school declared the school a “regime object”, the independent and the observer had to follow the election process, sitting on a stool at the school gate.
If, during early voting in Brest observers recorded violations related to the prohibition on the introduction of the final protocols and the differences in voter turnout, 9 August began to appear, the facts, when the voting list included citizens of other countries.
Tikhanovski in Brest
August 2, exactly a week before the main voting day in Brest was one of the most crowded rallies in support of presidential candidate Svetlana Tikhanovski. According to the estimates of human rights defenders, the action in the Park of Soldiers-internationalists gathered at least 18 thousand people. The Brest meeting local residents remembered on election day on 9 August. Pensioner Olga Ivanovna said that such elation was experienced only in 1994, when Belarus held its first presidential election.
“Of course, there was no such mass meetings, but people felt injustice and expect that the situation will change, when Alexander Lukashenko becomes President. And now again the same feeling that the authorities are acting unfairly. I looked into the eyes of the young at the rally Lights (Tikhanovski – Ed.), and they had the same hope as we have 26 years ago,” recalls Olga.
A significant role in organizing such a massive rally was played by the activists, for the third year opposing the construction of a battery factory near Brest. During a campaign trip to this city the incumbent President Alexander Lukashenko promised to hold the first in Belarus a local referendum to decide the fate of the plant. But many opponents appear in the Brest hazardous production associate its closure solely with the change of government in the country. It demanded and Lukashenko’s opponents who took to the streets after the polls closed.