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Belarus prosecutor says 600 charged for election protests

[JURIST] The Belarus government has charged close to 600 people who participated in the protests that followed the March 19 presidential election [JURIST report] that returned incumbent president Alexander Lukashenko [official website; BBC profile] to a third term in a landslide, according to Belarus prosecutor general Pyotr Miklashevich on Wednesday. Last week, Miklashevich indicated that there would be trials for the protesters [JURIST report], who were mostly arrested during police raids on opposition demonstrations [JURIST report]. Both the US and the European Union have condemned the police action and plan to seek sanctions based on an independent report that the election was severely flawed [JURIST report]. RIA Novosti has more.

Also on Wednesday, a lawyer for prominent opposition leader Alexander Kozulin [CFR profile and interview] said the politician will be detained for at least two more months while an investigation takes place. Belarusian authorities arrested Kozulin [JURIST report] at a protest in Oktyabrskya Square on March 25 and have charged him with several public disorder crimes. Kozulin, who could be fined or sent to prison for up to six years for the charges, has pleaded not guilty. RIA Novosti has more.

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