Belarusian Popular Front decides to withdraw its parliamentary candidates


Delegates to the Belarusian Popular Front (BPF)’s convention held in Minsk this past weekend voted 41 to two to withdraw the party’s 31 candidates in the September 18-23 House of Representatives elections.

The withdrawal of its candidates will not bring any significant benefit to the party but will help it look honest and truthful in the eyes of people, as the BPF earlier announced that its candidates would pull out unless the authorities released political prisoners and admitted its representatives to election commissions, said BPF Chairman Alyaksey Yanukevich.

The BPF nominated 57 representatives to district election commissions and 233 to precinct commissions, but only 13 were admitted to district commissions and the same number to precinct commissions.

“You could learn from our discussion that not all candidates were willing to pull out, but all agreed to obey the decision of the convention, the supreme body of the party,” BPF Deputy Chairman Ryhor Kastusyow, a former presidential candidate, said in an interview with BelaPAN. “Personally, I believe that our candidates should withdraw. It is obvious that authorities have already drawn up a list of future members of the parliament. It is easy to guess that all the 110 people who will form the House of Representatives are those representing the authorities and whose candidacies have been approved at the highest level. One should have no illusions that someone of the BPF could become a member of the House, even if he has strong support in his area and really wins by votes. The election results will simply be falsified.” //BelaPAN