Updated at 10:54,14-11-2017

Lukashenka sworn in as Belarusian President again

RFE/RL

Belarus's President Alyaksandr Lukashenka has been inaugurated for the fifth time following an election that was judged by Western monitors to be neither free nor fair.

Lukashenka took the oath during a ceremony at Minsk's Independence Palace on November 6, saying, "I swear to serve the people of the Republic of Belarus, respect and defend human and civil rights and freedoms, observe and protect the Belarusian Constitution, and fulfill my high obligations solemnly and honestly."

After the event, Lukashenka praised a recent decision by the United States and European Union to suspend most sanctions against Belarus, saying that "the West has seen a decent partner."

Lukashenka, who has ruled the former Soviet republic with an iron fist almost unchallenged for 21 years, won a fifth term last month with 83.5 percent of the vote.