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Tens of thousands protesters rally in Minsk as police detain 250

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The visit will be the first to Russian Federation by the Belarusian leader since protests broke out over his disputed election win. Russian Federation has dispatched media workers to Belarus to replace striking staff at the state broadcaster.

Moscow offered Lukashenko support by sending it would send paratroopers to Belarus for "Slavic Brotherhood" joint drills.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Friday however there was no plan for the leaders to hold a news conference or sign any documents.

The European Union is requesting an urgent debate on Belarus at the top United Nations rights body next week, describing a "deterioration" in the situation there, a letter written by the German ambassador showed on Friday.

Speaking to reporters, Biegun also asked how Moscow could "back such a regime and such violence against peaceful citizens".

"We have to show with this march that he (Lukashenko) doesn't control the country, that he is not in a position to speak on behalf of Belarusians", said Gennady, 35, a logistics worker who declined to give his surname.

The 66-year-old has promised to defend Belarus. Lukashenko denies the allegations that the elections were rigged and has refused to speak with the opposition leaders. She has taken shelter in European Union member Lithuania after coming under official pressure.

Lukashenko has in the past ruled out outright unification with Russian Federation but his options are now limited, analysts say.

But with Western pressure against Lukashenko mounting, his options are now limited.

The crisis engulfing Moscow's closest partner echoes revolts that swept away pro-Kremlin leaders in Ukraine and Armenia since 2014, and comes weeks after Putin changed Russia's constitution to allow him to extend his two-decade rule potentially to 2036.

Police starting detaining people shortly after the protests started at 1200GMT, putting at least 40 into police vans in the first hour of the rally alone, according to the witness.

Putin has swiftly congratulated Lukashenko on his victory and raised the possibility of intervening militarily.

Tens of thousands of anti-government protesters took to the streets of the Belarusian capital on Sunday heading towards the Palace of Independence to demonstrate against the results of the August presidential election.

Senior opposition members have been jailed or pressured to leave the country.

Recently, it was reported that several columns of protesters headed for the elite village, where the residence of Alexander Lukashenko is located.

The two countries have already formed a "union state" that links their economies and militaries.

British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab also rejected Lukashenko's election, calling it "fraudulent", in a statement.

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