Belarusians began voting Sunday in parliamentary elections expected to grant pro-regime candidates a majority of the 110 seats in the lower house.
Nearly a third of eligible voters cast early ballots ahead of election day, the election commission said, according to Russian news agency Tass.
The former Soviet republic, which the United States has famously labelled as Europe's last dictatorship, has been praised as more democratic in recent years.
The European Union removed sanctions against Belarus' longtime leader, Alexander Lukashenko, last year in support of the country's course.
The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) is to have 400 monitors observe Sunday's elections.
Sunday, September 11, 2016 - 17:37
Monday, September 12, 2016 - 12:39