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The Leader of Europe's 'Last Dictatorship' Is Facing an Unprecedented Challenge. Here's What It Could Mean for Belarus

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Europe’s longest serving leader Alexander Lukashenko has long worked hard to seem invincible. He has dominated past elections that the U.S. has deemed neither free nor fair and brokered no dissent and suppressed protests. Now, he is facing an unprecedented challenge as he runs for a sixth term as president of Belarus in elections on August 9. A former teacher and political novice, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, has emerged as his main rival, pledging to topple Lukashenko’s regime and restore democracy.
Tens of thousands have rallied across Belarus in some of the country’s biggest opposition protests in a decade, amid mounting frustration over the government’s mishandling of the COVID-19 crisis, combined with grievances about the economy. Referring to Lukashenko, protestors chanted ‘stop the cockroach’ and held placards reading ‘change!’.
“For the first time in his 26-year rule, Lukashenko knows the majority don’t support him,” says Aleksandr Feduta, a former aide to the incumbent, who was i…

Iran | Man Hanged in Public in Firuraq

Iran Human Rights (IHR); June 19, 2020: A man was hanged in public in the Iranian northwestern city of Firuraq on Thursday, June 11. 

This is the first recorded public execution in Iran in 2020.

According to Azarbakhish website, on the morning of Thursday, June 11, 2020, a man was executed in public in the Iranian northwestern city of Firuraq, West Azerbaijan. 

He was sentenced to qisas (retribution in-kind) for killing his mother-in-law and brother-in-law. 

UN human rights experts had previously drawn particular attention to continued reports of public executions in Iran, as “a dehumanising effect on both the victim and those who witness the execution.” 

They had also emphasised on the “already cruel, inhuman and degrading nature of the death penalty,” UN experts said.

According to IHR’s Annual Report on the Death Penalty in Iran, at least 280 people were executed in Iran in 2019, including 225 for murder charges. 

The same report states that 13 executions were carried out in public in 2019. 

Source: Iran Human Rights, Staff, June 19, 2020


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"One is absolutely sickened, not by the crimes that the wicked have committed,
but by the punishments that the good have inflicted." -- Oscar Wilde

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