MINSK, Belarus, Sept. 23 (UPI) -- The two main opposition parties in Belarus said they boycotted Sunday's parliamentary elections because of alleged fraud.
United Civic and the BPF parties urged voters to skip what they called "pseudo-elections" for 110 seats in the Belarus Parliament.
Opponents of President Alexander Lukashenko contend Parliament has lost its independence since he took power in 1994 and now merely rubber-stamps whatever decrees he sends to them.
The absence of the two parties and their members could be important in the outcome of the voting because a turnout of at least 50 percent is required to make the election valid, Russia's RIA Novosti news service said.
Election officials in the ex-Soviet republic said about 20-percent of eligible voters cast their ballots in the early voting last week.
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