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Belarusian Opposition Activists Blocked From Traveling To EU Meeting

Anatol Lyabedzka was one of three Belarusian opposition leaders to be removed from a train to Moscow.
MINSK -- Belarusian police have removed three opposition activists from a Minsk to Moscow train to prevent them from taking a flight to Brussels, Belgium, for a meeting with European Union officials.

The head of the United Civil Party, Anatol Lyabedzka, leader of the Fair World party, Syarhey Kalyakin, and opposition activist Alyaksandr Atroshchankau were charged with petty hooliganism after they were removed from the train overnight and taken to a police station in the eastern town of Vorsha.

It was the latest case of Belarusian opposition activists, rights defenders or journalists being prevented from leaving Belarus for the European Union following recent EU sanctions targeting President Alyaksandr Lukashenka's regime.

The three activists were apparently trying to circumvent the travel ban by entering the EU via a flight from Belarus's eastern neighbor and ally Russia.

With reporting by AFP