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  Thursday, April 9, 2020
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Alexander Voitovich, a scientist, said Monday he was terminating his presidential campaign
"I do no want to help create an illusion that [incumbent president] Lukashenko's running for a third term is lawful and that the campaign is being conducted in line with the country's Constitution and election legislation," Voitovich said in a statement. Voitovich said the election commission did not include independent candidates' representatives. He also claimed that all contenders, except Alexander Lukashenko, had been denied access to the state-controlled media. "This year's campaign has shown that the same story is repeating again, and no election will actually take place," Voitovich said, adding that about 30,000 signatures had been raised in his support already. Seven campaign groups to gather signatures in support of presidential candidates, among them Lukashenko and Alexander Milinkevich, the sole candidate representing the democratic opposition, will continue their activities. The deadline for signature collection is January 27. Each candidate is required to have a minimum of 100,000 signatures. Official registration is scheduled for February 12-21, after which election campaigns will gain momentum. Presidential elections in Belarus are slated for March 19, 2006. Incumbent President Alexander Lukashenko, ruling the country since 1994, announced his intention to run for a third term in October. A 2004 referendum abolished the Belarusian constitution's clause limiting the head of state to two consecutive terms.
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