Belarus condemns Kyrgyz revolution

The isolated former Soviet republic of Belarus on Friday sharply criticized the Kyrgyzstan opposition's seizure of power there, and called it unconstitutional.

"The events of March 24, 2005 in the capital of Kyrgyzstan provoke concern in Belarus," the Belarusian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

"The unconstitutional overthrow of the government in Krygyzstan could have fatal consequences for peace, stability and prosperity in the country, as well as in the Central Asian region as a whole," the Foreign Ministry said.

Belarus' President Alexander Lukashenko has ruled his nation of 10-million people with an iron hand, stifling dissent, persecuting independent media and opposition parties and prolonging his power through elections international organizations say were marred by fraud.

In October, Lukashenko, who has been called Europe's last dictator, pushed through a referendum that will allow him to seek a third term in 2006 and run in subsequent elections.

Associated Press

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