VILNIUS, 5 March – RIA Novosti. Lithuanian Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis commented on the request of the Prosecutor General's Office of Belarus to extradite ex-presidential candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, stating that “hell will freeze before the authorities consider Minsk's demand.”
Earlier on Friday, the General Prosecutor's Office of Belarus announced that it had sent a request to Lithuania to extradite Tikhanovskaya to prosecute her for crimes against the order of government, public safety and the state. The department noted that the basis for bilateral cooperation in the criminal law sphere is the agreement between Belarus and Lithuania on legal assistance and legal relations in civil, family and criminal cases dated October 20, 1992. On March 2, the Investigative Committee of Belarus announced that it would initiate the extradition of Tikhanovskaya, and the relevant documents were transferred to the Republican General Prosecutor's Office. However, the Lithuanian Foreign Ministry told RIA Novosti that this country “does not betray people who are subject to political persecution.”
“Lithuania was and will be a stone wall in which democratic forces persecuted by the regimes will find refuge,” Landsbergis said.
According to the minister, everyone who has found refuge in Lithuania can feel safe.
“And we can tell the Belarusian regime that hell will freeze before we start considering your demands,” added the head of the Lithuanian Foreign Ministry. Protests in Belarus
After the presidential elections held in Belarus on August 9, 2020, in which Alexander Lukashenko won for the sixth time, who, according to the CEC, gained 80.1% of the vote, mass opposition protests began in the country, in Minsk and in the regions they were associated with riots … During their dispersal, the security forces used special means and special equipment. The authorities have officially confirmed the deaths of three protesters. The shares gradually changed their character to a local and small number. On February 11, the KGB of Belarus announced that the situation in the country had stabilized, the peak of the protests had passed, their manifestations had practically disappeared.
The opposition believes that Tikhanovskaya won the elections, demands new elections and initiates the expansion of international sanctions against Minsk, previously adopted by Western countries. In Belarus, criminal cases have been initiated against a number of members of the opposition coordinating council created on the initiative of Tikhanovskaya, including calls for the seizure of power, the creation of an extremist formation, and a conspiracy to seize state power in an unconstitutional way. Tikhanovskaya, who left for Lithuania after the elections, is also a defendant in the case of the creation of an extremist group and an attempt to seize power; Minsk has put her on the wanted list.