A spokeswoman for the Ministry of the Interior informed about the death of one of the demonstrators. According to her, the man wanted to throw home-made explosives towards the intervening police units. However, independent journalists reporting from the crime scene state that the victim was a man who was killed by a police flash grenade.
Police in Minsk prevented all metro stations in the city center from closing before further protests. According to information from the Novaya Gazeta server, passers-by are also detaining cyclists who are staying nearby. Some protesters beat batons, according to Reuters.
Police also deployed flash grenades and rubber bullets. Dozens of people were detained. In some parts of the city, people are building barricades from flowerpots, trash cans and other things they find on the street, the Polish television station Belsat, which broadcasts in Belarusian, said on Twitter. A journalist from the Belarusian newspaper Naša Niva also suffered a leg injury while shooting with rubber bullets used by men in military uniforms without marking on one of the streets of the Belarusian capital.
Large squares and centers are blocked by members of the security forces in other major Belarusian cities such as Grodno and Brest.
In Minsk, the police block Independence Square and Oktyabr Square, where only public transport vehicles are allowed to enter. Adjacent shops or pharmacies are also closed for “technical reasons”.
21 criminal cases
Belarusian police also arrested Russian reporter Konstantin Pridybail (later released) and Belsat TV operator Vitaliy Dubik on Monday.
Several independent Russian journalists were arrested on Sunday night when thousands took to the streets of Minsk. Security forces also deployed tear gas, flash grenades, rubber bullets and water cannons against them. Investigators are resolving a total of 21 suspicions of a crime after Sunday’s demonstration.
A member of the security forces is gesturing at a man
Foto: Vasily Fedosenko, Reuters
The protests spread abroad. Police in riot gear stormed a rally on Friday, removing hundreds of protesters by truck. The protesters came to the embassy with banners “For ours and your freedom”. Police tried to arrest one of them after he threw eggs at the embassy building.
So far, at least one person has been killed in a protest by a police van, and dozens more have been injured. Authorities do not mention the victims.
According to the election commission, current president Alexander Lukashenko won 80.23 percent of the vote, while the main opposition candidate, Sviatlana Cichanouska, won only 9.9 percent. However, she declared herself the winner and the opposition claims that the election was rigged, and therefore filed a Cichanous complaint with the Central Election Commission.