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Polish Sejm Alarmed At Belarus's Presidential Campaign --> The speaker of the Sejm, Marek Jurek, welcomes the united opposition's candidate in the Belarusian presidential elections, Alyaksandr Milinkevich, in January in Warsaw (file photo) (epa) March 10, 2006 -- Polish lawmakers today accused the authorities in Belarus of violence and of harassing opposition candidates ahead of the March 19 presidential election.

Poland's parliament, the Sejm, adopted a resolution in which it condemns the Belarusian authorities' "brutal breaking of the [country's] laws" and expresses "deep alarm" at cases of "violence, imprisonment, harassment, and intimidation" of opposition candidates and activists.

It says it will continue to support those who "undertake the fight for a free and democratic Belarus."

Poland has long pushed for democratic change in neighboring Belarus, which has been ruled by authoritarian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka since 1994. Lukashenka is running for a third term.


Video Roundtable On Belarus/Ukraine

On December 8, 2005, RFE/RL and the Policy Association for an Open Society (PASOS) jointly conducted a roundtable discussion on issues relating to Belarus's post-Soviet transition. To view video of the roundtable, click here.

See also:

Belarus: Authorities 'Cleanse' Media Ahead Of 2006 Vote

Can Belarus's Opposition Unite To Challenge Lukashenka?

Belarus: The Slow-Boiling Dictatorship