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World New footage 'shows Belarus protester was shot by police', says partner

14:42  16 august  2020
14:42  16 august  2020 Source:   news.sky.com

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MINSK, Belarus — The partner of a man who died in the protests engulfing Belarus says she does not believe the official account that Alexander Taraikovsky Elena German told The Associated Press on Saturday that she is sure her 34-year-old partner was shot by police . German spoke a few hours

The partner of a man who died in the protests engulfing Belarus says she does not believe the official account that Alexander Taraikovsky was killed when an explosive device that he Elena German told The Associated Press on Saturday that she is sure her 34-year-old partner was shot by police .

Footage has emerged of the death of a man during protests in Belarus - and his partner, who has seen the video, says it disproves the official account of his killing.

a woman standing in front of a mirror posing for the camera: Elena German, the wife of Alexander Taraikovsky, watching the footage of the moment he died © Sky News Screen Grab Elena German, the wife of Alexander Taraikovsky, watching the footage of the moment he died

Alexander Taraikovsky, 34, died on Monday in the capital Minsk as unprecedented demonstrations broke out.

The protests in Belarus were sparked by Alexander Lukashenko - widely regarded as a dictator - claiming victory in disputed presidential elections to continue his 26 years in power.

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The partner of a man who died in the protests engulfing Belarus says she does not believe the official account that Alexander Taraikovsky was killed when an explosive device that he intended to throw at police blew up in his hand.

The partner of a man who died in the protests engulfing Belarus says she does not believe the official account that Alexander Taraikovsky was killed when an explosive device that he Elena German told the Associated Press on Saturday that she was sure her 34-year-old partner was shot by police .

Demonstrators say Mr Taraikovsky was shot by police. But the Belarus government said he died after an explosive device he had intended to throw at officers blew up in his hand.

In footage that has now emerged of Mr Taraikovsky's death, the demonstrator is shown with his hands to his body as blood pours from his chest amid the sounds of explosions and gunshots.

a group of people looking at each other: Mr Taraikovsky's funeral took place this weekend © Getty Mr Taraikovsky's funeral took place this weekend

He then collapses in front of a line of riot officers and lays motionless, before the officers walk in a line towards the body and some crowd over him.

Police have fired tear gas, rubber bullets and stun grenades during the week-long protests since last Sunday's elections.

After watching the footage, Mr Taraikovsky's partner Elena German said: "He has nothing in his hand.

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The partner of a man who died in the protests engulfing Belarus says she does not believe the official account that Alexander Taraikovsky was killed when an explosive device that he Elena German told The Associated Press on Saturday that she is sure her 34-year-old partner was shot by police .

Protesters and riot police officers clashed in Minsk, Belarus , on Sunday during a protest against Many protesters were injured, along with dozens of police officers, and at least one protester died when Two of her associates said the Belarusian authorities had pressured her to leave for Lithuania.

"Here is a shot, they shoot, he grabs his chest. Blood. He falls."

Ms German, who was able to see Mr Taraikovsky's body in a morgue on Friday, has called for international experts to investigate her partner's death.

"There is a seam in the chest area - the hole was sewn up, but there is a black bruise; it's small but we noticed," she said.

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One person was shot as Belarusian police fired live rounds at a crowd in the city of Brest near the The officers fired warning shots in the air but when it failed to have an effect on the attackers, they Shocking footage on Tuesday showed a special forces officer threatening people with a grenade in

State TV later showed footage of violence to blame protesters and warn people not to participate. Media captionSergiy says riot police in Belarus threatened to burn him alive. His partner , Elena German, told the Associated Press news agency that she believed the 34-year-old was shot by police .

"His hands and feet are completely intact, there are not even bruises. Obviously, it was a shot right in the chest."

On Saturday, the day of Mr Taraikovsky's funeral, thousands rallied at the site where the car mechanic died.

Some demonstrators showed bruises they said were due to police beatings.

Further protests, as part of a huge 'March of Freedom', are expected in Minsk.

The demonstration is due to culminate on the city's Independence Square outside the main government building.

There are fears of clashes as a pro-government rally is also planned.

The opposition claimed Mr Lukashenko planned to bus people in from other parts of the country and that they had been coerced into attending.

Last Sunday's elections have been condemned internationally as unfair, while the Belarusian government has been urged to end its use of violence in its attempts to suppress the ongoing protests.

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Protesters are rallying in Belarus despite ongoing clashes with riot police who have deployed teargas and flash grenades, as they express Protests also took place in other cities across the country, including Gomel, Mogilev, and Vitebsk. In some places there was much smaller police presence and

Following a hotly contested presidential election in Belarus , protests have erupted in cities across the country. The most violent clashes have been in Minsk Many streets in downtown Minsk have been closed off by police or blocked off by demonstrators. Some protesters are calling for a general strike

Meanwhile, Igor Lesgchenya - the Belarus ambassador to Slovakia - became the first of his country's diplomats to support the demonstrations in his homeland.

In a video message, Mr Lesgchenya said: "In Slovakia, I represent Belarus and the Belarusian people, which in accordance with the constitution is the only source of power in our country.

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"I am in solidarity with those who took to the streets of Belarusian cities with peaceful processions so that their voice was heard."

He added: "I sincerely hope that the future of my country will be based on taking into account the positions of all sectors of society and representatives of various political forces.

"Belarusians have suffered this right."

The demonstrators in Belarus are calling for main opposition figure Svetlana Tikhanovskaya to be recognised as the winner of Sunday's presidential election.

Mr Lukashenko was declared the winner with 80% of the vote, compared with just 10% for Ms Tikhanouskaya, who has now fled to Lithuania.

Ms Tikhanouskaya ran in the election alongside two other women; Maria Kolesnikova and Veronika Tsepkalo.

Both Ms Tikhanovskaya and Ms Tsepkalo entered the contest after their husbands were barred from running for office.

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Valery Tsepkalo fled Belarus with his two sons for Russia last month and is now in Ukraine, from where he has condemned "politically-motivated" bribery charges against him.

In the early hours of Sunday, he claimed his wife and children had been held for more than two hours on the Russian side of the Russian-Ukrainian border as they tried to join him.

Meanwhile, Ms Kolesnikova has condemned a decision by Mr Lukashenko to pick up the phone to Russia's Vladimir Putin on Saturday.

Belarus's disputed president said the Russian leader promised to help him secure the country if necessary.

"He tried to ask for help of Putin," Ms Koleniskova told Sky News.

"We don't like it of course because our independent and sovereign Belarus is the main goal and we don't like to lose it only because of a president who wants to stay as a president here."


Video: "Police and protesters clash after Belarus presidential vote" (The Independent)

Belarus braces for mass protests as Lukashenko orders army to defend nation .
 

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