Hundreds of Arrests in Belarus Protests

Hundreds of Arrests in Belarus Protests

In massive protests against President Alexandr Lukashenko in Belarus over the weekend, around 600 protesters were arrested.


Human rights organization Wensa announced on Monday that there are several journalists among the detainees.

The authorities have not published official figures on the number of arrests. Tens of thousands of people took to the streets on Sunday to protest against Lukashenko, after the opposition called for a March of Pride.

Soldiers and police did everything they could to stop the demonstration and cracked down on water cannons and stun grenades. Observers talk about the most brutal crackdown by the authorities in weeks.

In the Eastern European country, massive demonstrations have been going on for weeks by citizens who want to get rid of President Lukashenko, who has been in power for a quarter of a century. Opposition supporters believe that election fraud was committed in August to keep the 66-year-old leader in power.

On Monday it was announced that two imprisoned businessmen associated with the opposition had been released. They are now under house arrest. On Saturday, Lukashenko visited a prison in Minsk unannounced.

There he sat around the table with arrested opposition leaders, to find a way out of the current conflict. Both men, along with other prominent political opponents, were imprisoned in the run-up to the election.

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