The activities of exiled Belarusian opposition figure Svetlana Tikhanovskaya are coordinated by Western countries, and she is being fully funded to go around the world for “pseudo-official events,” despite the Covid-19 pandemic.
That’s according to Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova, who, in an interview with Ukrainian YouTube blogger Anatoly Shariy, questioned why the former Belarusian presidential candidate is being hosted by the US State Department, despite not being a professional politician or political scientist.
“Because Tikhanovskaya, as we understand it, is completely financed [by the West]. That includes lodging, flights and the appropriate infrastructure,” Zakharova said. “That’s with Covid restrictions and so on. Her voyages, tours, pseudo-official events did not stop literally for a single month.”
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Zakharova added that Tikhanovskaya has been received by heads of state at official and high-level meetings at international organizations, despite her not being the leader of a country, and noted that the West has given her a “special status.”
“In some countries, she is almost acknowledged as a head of state, while in other countries, she is viewed as a political figure and a representative of the aspirations of the whole [of] Belarus,” Zakharova explained.
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Since her exiling, Tikhanovskaya has traveled around the world looking to get support for her cause and encourage foreign nations to team up against Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko. She is currently in the US, and in recent days has met with NGOs, politicians and even National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan. While in Washington, she asked American leaders to impose more sanctions on her home country.
Tikhanovskaya came to prominence last year when she ran against Lukashenko as a presidential candidate. According to the official results of the election, the long-time incumbent won, but the opposition figure’s supporters say the vote was rigged. Shortly after the election, she fled the country. Since then, Tikhanovskaya has been based in Lithuania.
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