On August 9, at 6 p.m., a plane carrying the family of Belarusian President Alexander Lukasnenko landed in Bodrum, Turkey, said Andrey Suzdaltsev, an assistant professor in the Department of World Economics and World Policy at the Russian National Research University of the Higher School of Economics.
According to Suzdaltsev, Lukashenko’s children and grandchildren were on board the plane.
"It's not for nothing. Lukashenko is madly afraid," the Russian newspaper Moscow Komsomolets quoted the scientist as saying.
"The active phase (of protests) will certainly pass. But the second phase of resistance begins. It’s signaled by the strike at the Belarusian Metallurgical Plant. This is what Belarusians are famous for: sabotage. They won't let officials work. The total rejection of this power will begin.
Belarusians are very stubborn in their positions. They have supported Lukashenko for decades. Whatever he did, he got away with it. That's why he reacts so strongly now. Being used to impunity, any resistance makes him angry.
All hopes to advance Russia’s integration with this man is a mistake. Lukashenko has not implemented a single agreement with us for 26 years. If someone hopes for integration now when Lukashenko is so weak, it is naivety and stupidity. Lukashenko is doomed. Belarusians won't get away from it. They're going to kill him, this or the other way," Suzdaltsev said.
In Suzdaltsev’s opinion, if Russia supports Lukashenko with resources, it will prolong the regime’s agony by about a year and a half.
"Now he relies only on bayonets, he owes power to the security forces. Practically it is a junta," the expert sums up.
Valery Solovey, a well-known Russian political analyst, believes that Lukashenko has already agreed to his resignation from power and negotiations on the process are underway. According to Solovey, players both inside Belarus and outside are involved in the negotiation process.
"Russia is one of the players. There are others. China, for example. Summary of these talks: Lukashenko will remain in office for no more than a year.
Lukashenko asked to give him a year to prepare for his departure. Then he'll leave. I don't know what the name of the person to whom he will transfer the power. But, according to the participants of the conflict, it should be a person who is absolutely acceptable to the Belarusian society and acceptable to the West.
China's position played an important role: in a soft but convincing manner, Xi Jinping asked Moscow not to annex Belarus. And Russia’s guarantee is just for Lukashenko to save his face for a while," Solovey said.
In his opinion, Lukashenko’s rival Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya "plays along with these agreements."
According to Solovey, she is not quite a Moscow puppet, but she has ties to Moscow. This is not a closely guarded secret.
Solovey says that congratulations of Putin and Xi Jinping on Lukashenko’s victory prove the consensus reached among the world powers. Xi Jinping was the first to congratulate Lukashenko. He promised Lukashenko all possible support in the international arena. However, he said that there was nothing he could do to help him inside the country.
No one has love for Lukashenko, everyone understands that he should leave after what happened. But everyone agreed that a one-year reprieve was the best of all bad scenarios. The Belarusian society, of course, has a different opinion on this issue, but it is not taken into account.
“They [the world powers] will consider if it’s possible to follow this agenda. But so far Tikhanovskaya refuses to act as his legitimate successor, and I do not think that there will be other candidates. There is, of course, a risk that events will develop in a different, not agreed upon scenario. First, Lukashenko himself may refuse to fulfill his commitments. But it is believed that, in this case, he is doomed. He certainly can't resist. Secondly, we will see what the public reaction will be," Solovey said.
The Russian news outlet Lenta.ru confirmed the departure of Lukashenko’s plane to Turkey, citing the PlaneFinder website.