The Guardian 8 March, 2006
Belarus election coup exposed
Belarus, bordering on Poland, the Ukraine and the Russian Federation retained its socialist system even as the Soviet Union disintegrated in 1990. It has continued to be criticised by the Western powers ever since. The US State Department and President Bush have described Mr Lukashenko, the President of Belarus as a "dictator" and made accusations of human rights abuses. After such accusations something nasty was to be expected in the run-up to elections which are to be held on March 19-20.
The country’s leaders are well aware that after the so-called "Orange" revolution in the Ukraine and the "Pink" uprising in Kyrgyzstan, they could expect something similar to be attempted in their country.
Opposition movements were created along similar lines of those organised in the Ukraine but so far nothing of any significance has been achieved by these Western-backed elements. There have been numerous attempts to destabilise the situation in Belarus and these continue today.
In recent weeks a coup attempt planned by the opposition with the backing of the US and European imperialist countries was exposed. According to the Belarussian state security service (KGB) the opposition had intended to gather several thousand people in the national capital Minsk after the announcement of presidential election results. An explosive device was to be detonated during the rally which would be blamed on government authorities.
The opposition planned to declare the election results false, seize administrative buildings and railway stations and block railroads.
Mr Sukhorenko, KGB Chairman, said that representatives of some Belorussian NGOs, as well as armed terrorists from Ukraine, Georgia and former Yugoslavia territories could, have been brought into the coup.
"The unregistered [non-governmental] organisations have gone underground, and are acting with a strong level of professionalism, as most of their members have been trained abroad".
Around100 mobile phones with Lithuanian SIM-cards and several tens of thousand of dollars has been seized from one of these organisations, Partnerstvo (Partnership).
Mr Sukhorenko told a press conference in Minsk that the organisation was financed by a regional branch of the National Democratic Institute, and US citizen David Hamilton. The KGB chief said the United States had allegedly allocated US$12 million to support these activities in 2006.
The journalists were shown documents seized from Partnerstvo premises which included "protocols of exit polls that were going to be used as proof of the falsification of the election results". These documents were confiscated during the arrest of the leaders of Partnerstvo.
Fake documents were confiscated by the Belorussian police and shown on TV. These included the results of a fake exit poll. The forms had already been filled in and showed that the opposition candidate had won the ballot with a vote of 53.7 percent. The exit poll was to be conducted by the Vilnius (Lithuania) office of the US Gallop service and the forms were dated 19/3/06, the date of the poll.
Mr Sukharenko said that the plotters would be unlikely to implement their plans now that they have been made public. "However, we will monitor the situation. We know both the organisers and perpetrators", he said, adding that they would be detained if they attempted to carry out their plan.