Belarus: Lukashenko re-elected with 83.49% of votes

alexandre-loukachenko-rendu-vote-compagnieIncumbent President Alexander Lukashenko was re-elected in the presidential election in Belarus with 83.49% of the vote, announced Monday the head of the Central Election Commission Lidia Iermochina.

Ms. Iermochina announced during a televised press conference the election results, which were also published on the website of the commission. It formally these are preliminary results still to be confirmed.

Regularly accused for years of serious human rights, repressing the opposition and muzzle the press, Lukashenko, head of the Belarus for 21 years, has increased in recent months gestures of goodwill, releasing including this summer the last Belarusian political prisoners.

The European Union therefore intends to lift sanctions against Lukashenko since 2011 and his entourage.

Aged 61, Mr Lukashenko, in power since 1994, gets a fifth term with the highest score he has ever had.

The Belarusian authorities had made a significant effort to ensure high participation rates, by organizing an early voting that began Tuesday. More than a third of the electorate of Belarus, which has just over 7 million voters voted before Sunday.

The electoral commission said turnout was 86.75%.

Lukashenko won the 2010 presidential with 79.6% of votes, a disputed result that triggered massive demonstrations of protest. In 2006, he obtained 83% of votes.

This year he was competing with three candidates little known. The candidate came second is Tatiana Korotkevitch, which got 4.42% of votes, the election commission said.

The main opposition leaders were prevented from participating in the election and called on voters to boycott the poll.

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