Most Belarusians are sure that Alexander Lukashenko will be elected for the fifth time. The Moscow-friendly president has three opponents but they're weak and unknown, says the most prominent opposition figure, Mikola Statkevich.
Germany's foreign minister has said hopes to increase EU-Belarus ties during a visit to Minsk. It was the first time in seven years that a German foreign minister held bilateral talks with the Russia-allied country.
Authorities in Belarus arrested people who were preparing "mass unrest" after discovering a weapons cache in a separate raid, according to state television. Activists in the ex-Soviet state dispute the official account.
Belarus is holding parliamentary elections on Sunday. Now that EU sanctions have been lifted, the authoritarian former Soviet republic is striving to have the vote appear democratic.
Russia and Belarus have moved toward a rapprochement after a series of disputes between the traditional allies. It comes as both countries have cracked down on rare street protests.
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