Belarus responds to OSCE criticism
The Belarusian Foreign Ministry has confirmed that it is closing the office of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which had criticized the conduct of the country’s recent presidential election.
The OSCE had criticised the conduct of the election which took place on 19th December 2010 when many reporters had been beaten up and arrested. President Alexander Lukashenko who has been in power for 16 years is said to have secured 80% of the vote. Nine candidates stood against him and subsequently seven of those candidates were arrested and charged of public order offences.