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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…

USA | Accused killers of 3-year-old Alabama girl face death penalty in 2 different courts

Kamille
A couple who kidnapped and murdered a little girl in Alabama last year have been indicted on federal kidnapping charges.

As a consequence, Patrick Stallworth and Derick Irisha Brown are facing the death penalty in 2 different courts.

Both have already been charged in state court with capital murder of a child, after the death of Kamille "Cupcake" McKinney, a 3-year-old snatched from a birthday party.

Her body was found in a dumpster outside Birmingham 10 days later.

"This crime is every parent's worst nightmare and my heart goes out to her family," said US Attorney Prim Escalona, the top Justice Department prosecutor in northern Alabama.

"Today brings us one step closer to seeing that justice is served for this family and for our community."

Kamille vanished while playing outside the Tom Brown Village Housing Community on October 12 last year.

Stallworth and Brown have both blamed each other for the little girl's death.

Patrick Devone Stallworth is expected to be charged over the 3-year-old's murder.

Stallworth's girlfriend Derick Irisha Brown is also expected to be charged.

Investigators were not aware of any link between the suspects and the girl's family.

"We can no longer assume that everyone is part of the village that is trying to raise the child," Birmingham Police Chief Patrick Smith said after Kamille's body had been found.

An autopsy showed Kamille died of asphyxiation by suffocation, and had methamphetamine and Trazodone, an antidepressant, in her bloodstream.

If it is proven Kamille died as a result of the kidnapping, the penalty in federal court is life behind bars or the death penalty.

The Trump administration recently reactivated the federal death penalty, and executed the first federal prisoners in 17 years earlier this month.

Daniel Lewis Lee, Wesley Ira Purkey and Dustin Lee Honken were all executed at a prison in Indiana in the space of four days.

Other federal prisoners on death row include Boston bomber Dzokhar Tsarnaev and Charleston church shooter Dylann Roof.

Alabama executes more people than almost any other state.

Source: 9news.com, Nick Pearson, July 30, 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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