Alexander Lukashenko's main rival in the Belarusian presidential election, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, has left the country. "Tikhanovskaya is safe, she is in Lithuania," Lithuanian foreign minister Linas Linkevičius said on Twitter.
In the presidential elections of Belarus on August 9, according to preliminary data of the Central Elections Committee, the incumbent President Alexander Lukashenko received 80.08% of the votes, Tikhanovskaya - 10.9%. On August 10, Tikhanovskaya filed a complaint with the Elections Committee demanding that the official election results be invalidated. Tikhanovskaya's husband Sergei, a well-known blogger in the country, had originally planned to take part in the elections, but was arrested before the registration of potential candidates.
On the night of August 10, mass protests erupted in more than 30 Belarusian cities against the official results of the presidential elections. About three thousand people were detained. On the night of August 11, the protests continued. Police and internal troops used tear gas, stun grenades and rubber bullets against the demonstrators.
The German government has stated that the minimum democratic standards were not met in the elections in Belarus. The U.S. State Department called the elections in Belarus undemocratic. President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen condemned the violent actions against the protesters in Belarus and called for the publication of the exact results of the presidential elections.