Belarusian autocrat’s press office announced that imprisoned members of the opposition agreed to engage in a five-hour discussion about the constitutional reform and to keep it “secret”.
On Thursday 8th October, Lithuania froze a cross-border EU payment of 5.8m euro to Minsk. The Deputy Interior Minister of the Baltic state explained this was due to the suspicion that previous donations had been misused.
Russia’s Ministry of the Interior announced that Belarus’ opposition leader, Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, has been put on their wanted list on “a criminal charge”.
Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya met with German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Tuesday, October 6. The former presidential candidate, currently an informal opposition leader in political exile, said that a new presidential election in Belarus needs to be organized in the near future.
On Monday, pensioners took to the streets of Minsk to protest against the official election results. Approximately 200 people attended the demonstration. When the protest was over and the participants were dispersing, the militia detained two people.
On Sunday, October 4, more than 240 people in total were detained during the protests, according to the information collected by the Viasna Human Rights Centre. The majority of them were arrested in Minsk, but also in Brest, Grodno, Vitebsk, Mogilev, Babruysk and Salihorsk.
Day 54 & 55 – Polish plan for Belarus approved by European Council | Belarus reciprocally sanctions EU
On Friday, Polish PM – Mateusz Morawiecki, announced that the European Council had approved the Polish “economic plan for a democratic Belarus”. He added that organisations such as International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and the European Investment Bank will hopefully be involved.
Further to Macron’s meeting with Svetlana Tikhanovskaya, Angela Merkel said to German MPs on Wednesday that she looked forward to meeting Tikhanovskaya “soon”. Moreover, she praised Belarusian women on standing against the regime, saying that she found it “really impressive”. The legitimate president of Belarus will visit Berlin on 5 October.
On Tuesday, September 29, Minsk hosted the Forum of Regions of Belarus and Russia. Due to coronavirus pandemic, the Russian delegation participated in it only remotely. The presidents of both countries spoke during the Forum. Alexander Lukashenko announced that Belarus is ready to talk to Russia about all proposals that strengthen economic security.
None of the seven members of the top leadership of the opposition’s Coordination Council are operating freely within the country at the moment. Some of these people were arrested, most of them are in exile. The last one – Svetlana Alexievich, awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature, left for Germany.
Traditionally, on Sunday, a weekly culmination of the peaceful protests against the Lukashenko’s regime took place. Several tens of thousands of people took part in the protest in Minsk, fewer than in previous Sunday marches. This march was announced as a symbolic inauguration of Tsikhanouskaya.
Three days after Lukashenko’s notorious inauguration, Minsk’s residents gathered to express their support for Tsikhanouskaya who, in a rightful manner, should have been sworn in. During the rally, 106 people were detained.
In response to the EU’s announcement to impose sanctions on Belarus, the Belarusian Foreign Minister – Vladimir Makei, said that these sanctions would be “nothing but attempts to bring chaos and anarchy to [their] country to make Belarus lose many years of development.”
On September 24, Russia transferred further airborne units to Belarus for Slavic Brotherhood maneuvers. This happened on the day of the unannounced inauguration of President Alexander Lukashenko. The inauguration was kept secret and the state media informed about the swearing in after it happened.