Belarus opposition leaders Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, Olga Kovalkova, Maxim Znak, Maria Kolesnikova, Sergei Dylevsky and others are being investigated in relation to forming an “extremist association,” Belarus’ Public Prosecutor’s Office said on Monday.
The office accused the group of forming a “conspiracy” with the objective of seizing control via a coup, the news agency DPA reported.
The criminal proceedings are widely considered as politically motivated as strongman Alexander Lukashenko seeks to silence his opponents.
Government critic Kolesnikova has been in custody since September. The 38-year-old has said security officers put a bag over her head during her arrest and told her she would be taken out of the country “alive or in bits.”