U.S. wants new vote in Belarus election
MINSK, Belarus (AP) -- The United States called for a new vote and the European Union threatened sanctions on Belarus, where thousands of opposition supporters gathered in the capital for a second night Monday to protest President Alexander Lukashenko's re-election.
But the number of demonstrators was smaller than on election night, and prospects for a Ukraine-style "Orange Revolution" appeared remote as many of the protesters appeared to have little appetite for a prolonged vigil and a possibly violent confrontation with police.
Lukashenko said Monday that his foes had failed to topple him in a foreign-backed "revolution."
With overnight temperatures at 28 degrees, protesters set up a dozen small tents and vowed to turn the demonstration into a round-the-clock presence. Most of the tents were draped with historic national flags favored by critics of Lukashenko, who has scrapped them for a Soviet-style version.
"This is our last chance," said Vladimir Fivsky, a 20-year-old student who had wrapped one of the red-striped white flags around his shoulders and wore a pin in the same colors saying: "For Freedom!" He said came to the square to protest because he "had enough" after 12 years of Lukashenko's repressive rule.
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