Belarusian opposition r moves towards collective leadership


The Belarusian opposition have effectively rejected a single leader – ex-Presidential candidate Alexander Milinkevich and opted for collective leadership by the leaders of different parties.

336 out of the 600 delegates to the Congress of Democratic Forces held in Minsk at the weekend voted for a political council of forty and four co-chairs with equal rights.

“It would be good if there was one generally-recognized leader in Belarus, but there isn’t such a person in this hall”, the leader of the United Civic Party Anatoly Lebedko said. He became one of the co-chairs of the coalition, together with the leader of the Belarusian National Front Vintsuk Vechorko, the head of the opposition communists Sergei Kalyakin and the deputy head of the Social Democrat Party Anatoly Levkovich.

Alexander Milinkevich refused to join the council.

“Consolidation requires a single leader. I don’t believe in this set up of co-chairs and I don’t believe in the effectiveness of collective leadership. I can’t take responsibility for something I don’t believe in”, he explained at the Congress. He told journalists that a united Belarusian opposition was their common dream but that unfortunate it was not, at present, working. He said that he planned to begin his own movement “For freedom”.

Reuter reports that the Congress effectively demonstrated the division in the Belarusian opposition.

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