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"Nord Stream 2, the Kremlin’s pet project to bypass Belarus, Poland and Ukraine and deliver natural gas directly to Germany, poses a graver threat than Russia’s recent military buildup in the region," writes @JohnEdHerbst  in @thehillexperts .

EU prepares new round of Belarus sanctions from June, diplomats say

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Belarus's authoritarian ruler Alyaksandr Lukashenka has signed a decree allowing the transfer of presidential powers to the country's Security Council if he is killed or otherwise unable to perform his duties.

Prisoners are beaten, or denied food. Some almost suffocated after guards poured concentrated bleach on the floor. The conditions political detainees in Belarus face as part of a deliberate government policy amount to torture, human rights groups say.

CPJ testifies on threats to press freedom in Belarus at Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission

Here are four stories that will matter most in 2021: ➡️ A Russian union with Belarus ➡️ Covid in North Korea ➡️ Movement in Washington to alter how science is funded in the U.S. ➡️ Anti-malarial vaccines

Lukashenko, Putin agree to meet soon. Presidents of Belarus and Russia exchanged views on the situation in Belarus and Russia:

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#Belarus#Lukashenko  signs decree on the transfer of power in the event of his death

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Belarus' Lukashenko orders power to be transfered to Security Council in event of his death

Belarus opposition figure Tikhanovskaya calls on #Finland  to solve crisis

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Russia is not our ally; Putin is a murderer. He’s a tyrant who targets freedom-loving people & their elections. He helped Assad kill over 50k children in Syria & tortured activists in Belarus. He sows chaos & acts with impunity across the globe. I’m rooting for America, always.

What do Milosevic in Serbia (2000) Yanukovich in Ukraine (2004) Lukashenko in Belarus (2020) & Trump (2020) have in common? They're all leaders who tried to #OVERTURN  the will of the people as expressed in free & fair elections. So shameful that a U.S. president is on this list.

Protesters in Belarus told me Americans should know how hard it is to fight for democracy after it’s been taken away.

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Fundamental to democracy is the peaceful transition of power; without that, there is Belarus. Any suggestion that a president might not respect this Constitutional guarantee is both unthinkable and unacceptable.

Belarus police grabbing women out of churches

Belarus arresting the leaders of the opposition today, one by one. This would be a propitious time for an American president to *care*, to say so, to brush back Putin, to act like there's a reason the holder of the US presidency used to get called the leader of the free world.

Lukashenko ordered all red and white (pro-democracy) Belarus flags removed from buildings. So the people are making do... ht @ValzhynaMort 

In Belarus, Lukashenko is now strutting around carrying a machine gun.

I am confident that every other president in my lifetime would be speaking forcefully in support of the pro democracy protesters in Belarus. This is a shameful abdication of American leadership.

BBC: Security forces now shooting at protesters with live rounds in Belarus

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