Belarus's embattled dictator Alexander Lukashenko on Saturday claimed Vladimir Putin had agreed to provide military support if needed as he clung onto power in the face of a growing pro-democracy revolution.
Police launched a violent crackdown on protests that broke out last weekend when Mr Lukashenko claimed 80 percent of the vote in a presidential election, results largely seen as completely fabricated.
But authorities failed to contain the demonstrations and pressure is mounting at home and abroad on Mr Lukashenko to step down, after ruling the Eastern European country with an iron fist for 26 years.
Mr Lukashenko said on Saturday night that Russia and Belarus remained tied with a treaty with a "military component".
"I had a long, thorough conversation with the Russian president today," he said. "He and I agreed comprehensive aid to ensure the security of the Republic of Belarus will be provided at our first request," he said in comments carried by the Belta news agency on Saturday.
Moscow sees Belarus as a strategically important buffer against NATO and the European Union, and will have no desire to see the current leadership replaced with a Westernising reformer.
The Kremlin has, however, remained tight-lipped throughout the crisis on whether it would seek to prop up the regime. Analysts say direct intervention of the type seen during the 2014 Ukraine crisis, when pro-democracy protests ousted a Moscow-backed leader, is unlikely at this stage.
Mr Putin and Mr Lukashenko spoke by telephone on Saturday and both expressed “confidence that all the problems that have arisen will be resolved soon,” the Kremlin said, without describing what if any action would be taken.
A Kremlin statement afterwards made no mention of any security assistance.
三级成人视频The call came after the Belarusian leader told government officials that he needed to speak with Mr Putin “because this is not a threat to just Belarus anymore.”
"Defending Belarus today is no less than defending our entire space, the union state, and an example to others ... Those who roam the streets, most of them do not understand this,” he said.
At least two people were killed and more than 6,500 were arrested during nightly crackdowns on demonstrations in Belarus, which saw police use stun grenades, rubber bullets and tear gas in several cities.
Released protestors displayed severe injuries and Amnesty International described a campaign of “widespread torture” in jails.
三级成人视频Recent days have seen continued peaceful protests, with tens of thousands pouring onto the streets of Minsk, some of them embracing or handing flowers to riot police.
Mr Lukashnenko’s appeal to workers to end widespread strikes or risk crippling the Belarusian economy have fallen on deaf ears.
三级成人视频The presidents of the neighbouring Baltic states called on Belarus to conduct new “free and fair” elections as the EU prepared to impose sanctions in response to police brutality.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Saturday at a news conference in Warsaw, 125 miles from the border with Belarus: "We've said the elections themselves (in Belarus) weren't free. I've spent the last days consulting with our European partners.
三级成人视频"Our common objective is to support the Belarusian people. These people are demanding the same things that every human being wants.”
M三级成人视频r Lukashenko rejected calls for foreign mediation of the crisis, though the foreign ministry said it was committed to continuing dialogue with the EU.
Belarusian opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, who fled to Lithuania this week after apparent threats to her children, has said she is the legitimate winner of the election and announced the creation of a committee to oversee a transfer of power.
On Saturday, thousands of people gathered at the Minsk metro station where protestor Alexander Taraikovsky died during demonstrations.
Authorities said he died when an explosive went off in his hands, but his wife insists he was killed by police.
三级成人视频“He is a hero of Belarus who has died for our freedom,” 33-year-old Vitaly Karazahn, who had a Belarusian flag over his shoulders and two white roses in his hands, told The Telegraph.
三级成人视频“We will never forget him. This act by our government has crossed the line. There’s no going back. This death has changed everything.”
M三级成人视频oscow has described the presidential election as legitimate and accused outside forces of seeking to destabilise Belarus.
At the same time, Russian state media report that the Belarus demonstrations are “peaceful”. This is in contrast to coverage of the Ukrainian uprising six years ago, when portrayals of pro-democracy demonstrators as fascist thugs helped rally public support for direct intervention.
Relations between Russia and Belarus are traditionally close but have become strained in recent years as Minsk resists moves from Moscow towards closer integration.