The top United Nations human rights official for Belarus, Adrian Severin, says conditions there are getting worse.

Severin spoke in Brussels Wednesday.

He cited several examples - among them a new law making it a crime for Belarusians to criticize their government to international organizations, including the United Nations. He called the five year prison term for breaking this law "absurd."

The United States has called Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko Europe's last dictator because of his suppression of free speech and human rights.

Mr. Lukashenko claims he has wide support in Belarus.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.