Monday, July 23, 2007

Lukashenko purges security chief

Judging from the news, this appears to have been something of a busy week for the man who has been dubbed "Europe's last dictator", Aleksandr Lukashenko of Belarus.

First, Belarus reported that they had "smashed" a Polish spy ring in Minsk that had been stealing secrets about a proposed joint air defensive system with Russia. And then the next thing you know, Lukashenko goes ahead and purges the chief of Belarus' KGB. Is that how you thank your domestic intelligence agency for busting up a spy ring?

Apparently, the purges reflect an ongoing struggle between Lukashenko and his secret police. Lukashenko claims his removal of KGB chief Stepan Sukhorenko was an "administrative" move, but Lukashenko apparently isn't finished purging his apparatchiks. Next on the chopping block is prime minister Sergei Sidorski who will probably be history sometime this week. What's gotten into Lukashenko, anyway? Is it possible that he's worried about a possible coup d'etat?

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