"It is a crisis of power, an authoritarian power that cannot accept the logic of democracy and which is hanging on by force. It is clear that Lukashenko has to go,” Macron said.
Macron also admitted that he was impressed by the courage of the Belarusian protesters, who organize rallies and demonstrations every week.
"They know the risks they are taking by demonstrating every weekend, and yet, they are pushing forward with the movement to make democracy come alive in this country that has been deprived of it for so long," he added.
According to Macron, women, who march every Saturday in Belarus, are especially respected.
The French president also said that he had discussed the situation in Belarus with Russian President Vladimir Putin on September 14 before his meeting with Lukashenko in Sochi. During a conversation with the Russian leader, Macron called on Russia to "play its part" in resolving the conflict and noted that this role could be positive if it encourages Lukashenko to release political prisoners.
On August 14, the Central Election Commission of Belarus announced the final results of the election. According to the commission, incumbent President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko won the election. After that thousands of rallies took place in Belarus.