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A second opposition party, the Belarusian Popular Front, also boycotted the vote.

The United States and the European Union have imposed economic and travel sanctions on the Belarusian government because of its crackdown on opposition groups and independent news media.

EU foreign ministers are due to hold talks next month on political freedoms in Belarus. They are expected to consider possible revisions to sanctions against the country aimed at more specifically targeting those in the leadership accused of political repression.