Updated at 11:30,08-12-2016

Almost 26 percent voted early

As many as 25.9 percent of the eligible voters cast their ballots in the five-day early voting period preceding September 23, the main polling day in Belarus' elections for the House of Representatives, according to the central election commission.

As Mikalay Lazavik, secretary of the commission, told BelaPAN, voter turnout was 25.8 percent in the Brest region, 28.3 percent in the Vitsyebsk region, 26.6 percent in the Homyel region, 25.9 percent in the Hrodna region, 24.6 percent in the Minsk region, 27.5 percent in the Mahilyow region, and 24.1 percent in the city of Minsk.

As many as 19.6 percent of all eligible voters cast their ballots in the first four days of the five-day early voting period. As many as 26 percent of all eligible voters cast their ballots early in the previous, 2008 House of Representatives elections.

Mr. Lazavik said that roughly the same groups of people cast their ballots early in 2008 and 2012, which was why the early voting turnouts were similar.

"These are probably pensioners who are more disciplined and who have voted many times, viewing this as their duty and not right," Mr. Lazavik said. Many students also vote early to take a day off on Sunday, he added.

According to Mr. Lazavik, the central election commission has received no complaints about violations of electoral regulations. "There are claims of violations on websites, but they are probably intended for Internet users, journalists and, perhaps, for international observers," he said.