Pompeo says U.S. supports international efforts to examine Belarus election
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States remains deeply concerned by 'serious flaws' in Belarus' presidential election, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Thursday, adding that Washington was in support of international efforts to independently look into the country's electoral irregularities. The United States also supports international efforts to independently look into the human rights abuses surrounding the election and the subsequent crackdown, Pompeo said in a statement
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States remains deeply concerned by "serious flaws" in Belarus' presidential election, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Thursday, adding that Washington was in support of international efforts to independently look into the country's electoral irregularities.
The United States also supports international efforts to independently look into the human rights abuses surrounding the election and the subsequent crackdown, Pompeo said in a statement.
Belarus is facing its biggest political crisis since the breakup of the Soviet Union, with tens of thousands of demonstrators rejecting President Alexander Lukashenko's victory in an Aug. 9 vote his opponents say was rigged.
"The United States supports free and fair elections that reflect the will of the Belarusian people as a matter of principle. The August 9 elections did not meet that standard," he said.
"We support international efforts to independently look into Belarus' electoral irregularities, the human rights abuses surrounding the election, and the crackdown that has followed," Pompeo added.
Police detained more than 6,000 people in the first few days of protests and fired rubber bullets and tear gas. Dozens of protesters and police officers were injured in the clashes and two people died.
Pompeo said he strongly condemns the violence against peaceful protesters and journalists in Belarus as well as the arrest of opposition candidates and demonstrators, calling for the immediate release of those "unjustly detained" and an accounting of those reported missing.
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