Alexander Lukashenko's inauguration has taken place in Minsk at the Palace of Independence. The Central Election Commission of Belarus announced his victory, but the opposition claims that Svetlana Tikhanovskaya won the election by a large margin. Ukraine, as well as the EU and the United States, did not recognize the results of the elections in Belarus as fair and reflecting the real will of citizens.
Lukashenko’s inauguration has been reported by the state news agency BELTA.
It is noted that several hundred people were invited to the ceremony. These include top officials, members of the House of Representatives and members of the Council of the Republic, heads of government bodies and organizations, local executive and executive bodies, republican media, scientists, culture and sports figures.
According to the Constitution of Belarus, the President takes office after taking an oath: "When I take office as President of the Republic of Belarus, I solemnly swear to faithfully serve the people of the Republic of Belarus, to respect and protect the rights and freedoms of a person and a citizen, to observe and defend the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus, to faithfully fulfill my high duties."
Putting his right hand on the Constitution, Lukashenko took the oath in Belarusian language. He then signed the oath of, after which the chairman of the Central Electoral Commission, Lydia Yermoshina, handed him the presidential certificate.
Earlier, Belarusian opposition media reported that the inauguration could take place today, September 23, or at the end of this week - the beginning of the next, that is, September 27-28. In any case, according to the law, the ceremony should take place before October 9.
"We have received a report of the expected dates: September 23 (today) at 12:00 or 27/28 September (Sunday/Monday). But most likely, the process of the usurper’s coronation can take place on Sunday, judging by the fact that the website of the President-Hotel closed reservations on September 27, 28 and 29. Our Russian sources also say that leading Russian officials have been invited to Minsk," reported the opposition Telegram channel Nexta.
However, it is assumed that Lukashenko will not dare to hold the inauguration openly, so it may be a secret ceremony.
"One thing we know for sure is that Lukashenko will not be able to hold conceal his inauguration. And hundreds of thousands of Belarusians who will take to the streets on this day will clearly have their say," Nexta writes.
Meanwhile, Belarusian media and social media users report that traffic was blocked in Minsk this morning, and Lukashenko's motorcade arrived at the Palace of Independence. A large number of security forces are also present in Minsk.
Presidential elections in Belarus were held between August 4 and August 9. According to the Central Election Commision of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, who has been in power for 26 years, received 80.1% of the vote, and 10.1% voted for his main opponent Svetlana Tikhanovskaya.
The results of the elections in Belarus were not recognized by the United States, Canada, Great Britain and the countries of the European Union, including Belarus’ geographical neighbors - Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.
The Belarusian opposition also did not recognize the results of the elections because of mass fraud at polling stations and formed the Coordinating Council for the Transfer of Power. Since August 10, after the announcement of preliminary results, protests began in the country. They have been severely suppressed by the country's security forces. Protesters are demanding new elections.
Earlier,at Lukashenko's request, Putin formed a reserve of law enforcement officers, which, according to the Russian president, will not be used until "extremist elements" start to set fire to cars, banks, and seize administrative buildings.
Lukashenko, for his part, noted that "no soldiers from Russia have yet crossed the border." However, he stressed that neither he nor Putin "will flinch neither his voice, nor his hand, nor the foot in order to tackle anyone who twitches on the western border of the Union State."
According to many political scientists, public figures of Russia and ordinary citizens, one small provocation will be sufficient for Putin to deploy the reserve forces to Belarus.