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Last Updated: Saturday, 8 January, 2005, 15:12 GMT
Belarus president waves iron fist
Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko
Lukashenko has been in power for a decade
Belarus President Aleksander Lukashenko has insisted there will be no people's revolutions, whether "rose, orange or banana", in his country.

Mr Lukashenko, often described as Europe's last dictator, told a congregation at an orthodox Christmas mass in Minsk that Belarus would not witness the kind of popular protests in Georgia and Ukraine which saw the opposition rise to power.

He said his main task was to assure peace and security "no matter what it costs."

Mr Lukashenko, who has been in power for a decade, recently won a disputed referendum which allowed him to run for a third term.

The vote was held at the same time as parliamentary elections, in which not a single opposition candidate was elected to the house.

Subsequent demonstrations in the capital, Minsk, were violently dispersed.

In Ukraine, popular protests dubbed the "Orange Revolution" helped bring about a presidential re-election, in which the opposition triumphed.

Georgia meanwhile recently celebrated the anniversary of its "Rose Revolution" - protests which resulted in the president's resignation.


BBC NEWS: VIDEO AND AUDIO
Lukashenko defiant in face of criticism



SEE ALSO:
Q&A: Belarus votes
16 Oct 04 |  Europe
Profile: Alexander Lukashenko
10 Jul 04 |  Europe
Country profile: Belarus
08 Mar 02 |  Country profiles


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