Belarusian Opposition Spokesperson Wins Fight Against Expulsion

The press secretary of a Belarusian opposition party who was facing expulsion back to Russia in part over an unpaid mass transit ride has been allowed to stay.

Writing on Facebook on February 1, Anna Krasulina, spokeswoman for the United Civil Party (AHP), said her expulsion case had been closed by Belarusian authorities.

She said her next step was to apply for Belarusian citizenship.

Last year, Belarusian migration officials ordered Krasulina, who is a Russian citizen, to leave the country by November 30, to "maintain public order."

According to Krasulina, migration officials cited an unpaid ride on public transportation – a fine for which she had already paid – and participation in two unsanctioned demonstrations in 2016 and 2017.

Krasulina appealed the decision to a court in Minsk, which reversed the ruling to expel Krasulina.

The AHP's chairman Anatol Lyabedzka, who testified at the December 19 hearing, called the migration officials' order to expel Krasulina "a provocation by the authorities" and "political schizophrenia."

Krasulina moved to Belarus in 2002 and her husband and children are Belarusian citizens.

Krasulina has been the AHP press secretary since 2011.