The police used water cannons and batons
Belarusian security forces on Sunday detained dozens of demonstrators and used force, including water cannons and batons, to disperse people demanding a new presidential election.
As noted in the publication of Radio Liberty, eyewitnesses report dozens of victims, human rights activists – more than 250 detainees, including more than fifty journalists.
Videos posted by local media show police in black balaclavas dragging protesters into unmarked black vans and clubbing protesters at a protest that brought thousands of people onto the streets of Minsk.
In one of the episodes, a police car directs a powerful jet of water at people, pushing them back.
Protests in Belarus since the authorities announced that Alexander Lukashenko won the presidential election on August 9.
After that, people take to the streets every week, demanding Lukashenka’s resignation and new elections..
A former state farm director, Lukashenko has been in power since 1994 and denies that he won the election as a result of fraud.
During the protests after the elections, the security forces detained more than 13 thousand people, some of whom were later released.
Lukashenka’s main political opponents are in prison or have moved abroad.
The dispersal of the Sunday action was preceded by a Saturday meeting between Lukashenka and the detained opposition leaders in a Minsk prison. Following this unusual event, some opposition activists suggested that he was preparing to make concessions..
Minsk police said on Sunday that they detained “several dozen” people.
The Russian news agency Interfax reported the arrest of approximately 50 people, noting that police used flashbangs to disperse the demonstrators..
Global Human Rights Activists Discuss How to Keep Protest Movements Alive
US, EU, UK and Canada imposed sanctions on a number of high-ranking Belarusian officials accused of fraud and human rights violations after the presidential elections.
Opposition leader Svetlana Tihanovskaya, who is in Lithuania, called for new elections and the release of all political prisoners.
“We will continue to peacefully and persistently go out to marches and demand our own: new free and transparent elections,” Tikhanovskaya wrote in her Telegram channel..
Similar protest actions took place on Sunday in other cities of Belarus.
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