Representatives of the diplomacy of European Union countries, including Poland, the United States, Japan and Switzerland, laid flowers at the site of the death of a demonstrator in Minsk. “Spasibo, Dziakuj, Thank You” – chanted thousands of people at the metro station Puszkińska.
– We are together to show solidarity with those who suffered and to recall what our governments say, demanding an end to violence, release of prisoners and start dialogue with the society – said the Polish ambassador to Belarus, Artur Michalski, after laying flowers at the place where the demonstrator died next to the metro Puszkińska in Minsk.
– Diplomats from Poland, European Union countries and the USA, Great Britain, Japan and Switzerland express their solidarity with the victims of violence during the suppression of protests and appeal to the Belarusian authorities to stop the use of force, release prisoners and dialogue – he added.
The inhabitants of Minsk gather at metro Puszkińska, where a participant died during the break-up on August 11. On Thursday thousands of people stood around the metro station with flowers chanting “Żywie Belaruś” (Long live Belarus). When diplomats approached the place symbolically commemorating the killed, shouts of “Spasibo, Dziakuj, Thank You!”
– This place is symbolic, but there are many such places – said Michalski, referring to the protests that have been taking place since Sunday, which are brutally broken up by the police. – We consider it an important gesture of solidarity, because there are extremely violent actions of violence, there are victims, there are many arrested – he added.
“Sorry, sorry to see what happens”
– My name is Hope and I hope so – said a 68-year-old resident of Minsk. – It is not true what they say on TV that children, stunned by some conspiracy, come to protest. We are also here, the elderly, retirees – she stated.
– Tell everyone that. We want someone else, younger, to build a country where people can live with dignity. Enough of these promises for years that the average salary will be $ 500. I have worked in a library for 38 years and I have a pension of $ 150 – she said.
Thousands of people take to the streets all over Minsk on Thursday, holding flowers in their hands. The protest is peaceful. – Please, madam, I would prefer them to be flowers bought for a wedding, and not on such an occasion that people have to protest for someone to listen to them. Sorry, sorry to see what is happening – said a saleswoman in a flower shop in the underpass.
More information in the media about protests in state-owned enterprises – together with retirees, their employees are considered to be the traditional and most faithful electorate of the current president, Alyaksandr Lukashenka. If the workers’ protest spreads, it could have a significant impact on the political situation in the country, experts argue.
Main photo source: PAP / Justyna Prus-Wojciechowska