- Title: Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya: A symbol of change for Belarus
- Date: 30th September 2021
- Summary: TSIKHANOUSKAYA SINGING WITH PROTESTERS
- Embargoed: 14th October 2021 01:40
- Keywords: Belarus election Belarus opposition leader Belaurus Lukashenko Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya protests
- Location: VARIOUS
- City: VARIOUS
- Country: Various
- Topics: Government/Politics,Elections/Voting,Editors' Choice
- Reuters ID: LVA00HEWXT553
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: QUALITY AS INCOMING
Exiled Belarus opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya is among the contenders for the 2021 Nobel Peace Prize.
The 38-year-old former English teacher has been become the unexpected figurehead of popular resistance to the president of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, after her husband, a prominent video blogger, was jailed and other candidates were barred from running in the presidential election in August 2020.
Tsikhanouskaya's unforeseen candidacy drew thousands of signatures of support for her nomination and her campaign rallies attracted tens of thousands.
Pro-government media ridiculed the aspirations of the stay-at-home mother to become president.
Lukashenko, who has ruled Belarus since 1994, said he won the election and Tsikhanouskaya fled to Lithuania with her two children after a crackdown on protesters, fearing persecution.
Tens of thousands of Belarusians took to the streets for nearly two weeks following the contested election.
Tsikhanouskaya has since met with foreign leaders to press for their support and stronger actions against the Belarusian government. She set up an opposition council from exile.
She told Reuters that
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