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26 February 2024, 14:41

CIS head explains high voter turnout in Belarusian elections

MINSK, 26 February (BelTA) – People went to the polls to vote for peace and stability in Belarus, CIS Secretary General, head of the CIS observation mission Sergei Lebedev said at a meeting with Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko in Minsk on 26 February, BelTA has learned. 

"We saw that the voters were in good spirits," Sergei Lebedev noted. "The main idea that the voters expressed to us: ‘The main thing for us is peace, stability and prosperity of Belarus’. People went to the polls with this though in mind. I think this desire to ensure peace and stability in Belarus prompted people to come to the polls. That's why the turnout was so high."

More than 230 observers of the CIS mission visited all regions of Belarus, closely watched both the course of early voting and voting on a single voting day on 25 February, the CIS secretary general told reporters after the meeting with the head of state. "We talked with voters and local observers to get a broad picture of how the elections were going. On the whole, this picture was good," Sergei Lebedev explained.

"Unlike in 2020, when, unfortunately, we faced provocations by the opposition forces that tried to disrupt the elections, destabilize the situation by not recognizing the elections, the atmosphere at the polling stations this time, the mood of people was completely different from that in 2020 (I saw it for myself). The mood was festive," the CIS head noted. He noted that many came to the polls with their families. Elderly people also came, although voting at home was available for them. "An elderly man said: 'Of course, I had to come to the polling station. Why am I going to vote at home?" Such interest suggests that for people it is important who is elected deputies to the local councils and the House of Representatives," Sergei Lebedev said.

"Voters do care about which way Belarus is going to go, about the country’s future a," he stressed.  “We, observers from the CIS countries, also care about the future of Belarus, because it is the most active participant in integration cooperation within the CIS. We feel great support from the Belarusian president, the government, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and all government bodies. Representatives of Belarus work very actively in the CIS bodies. Today I thanked the president for sending and nominating worthy, competent and responsible people to the CIS bodies who contribute to the CIS development. The president expressed gratitude to all observers of the CIS countries for their objective assessment, friendly attitude towards the people of Belarus, and for the benevolent nature of the observation, which is very important.”
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