Belarus’ ruler vows to quash opposition rallies after vote

MINSK, Belarus (AP) — Belarus’ authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko is warning he will crack down in full force on the opposition supporters challenging the official vote results that extended his 26-year rule. He is deriding the opposition as “sheep” manipulated by foreign masters. Dozens were injured and thousands were detained hours after Sunday’s vote when police brutally broke up mostly young protesters with tear gas and flash-bang grenades. Rights activists said one person died after being run over by a police truck, which the authorities denied. Election officials on Monday declared Lukashenko winning a sixth term in office with over 80 percent of the vote, while opposition challenger Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya got 9.9 percent. Tsikhanouskaya dismissed the official results as a sham.