Actions against Renaming of Avenues Will Continue

2005 2005-06-15T10:00:00+0300 1970-01-01T03:00:00+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

According to RFE/RL

On 14 June Belarusian opposition held another protest action against renaming of the main avenues of Minsk by Lukashenka. This time the action participants kept to a new tactics.

At 6 p.m. several dozens members of different political parties gathered in front of Belarusian Academy of Arts. Several minutes later a police bus stopped near them. Riot squad policemen got out of it and began pushing the demonstrators into the yard where the dormitory of the academy is situated. The opposition activists handed out fly-sheets to passers-by. The police tore these fly-sheets out of their hands, that’s why people quickly took fly-sheets and went away. Seeing the present journalists go away, the police went after them. The journalists stopped several times. The following policemen also stopped and looked at the nearest houses or their boots.

Another part of the opposition, predominantly youngsters, stood near Kastrychnik cinema. They handed out informational bulletins to people while the police dealt with those who were near the Academy of Arts. By the time the heads of Savietski borough police and riot squad policemen came up to the cinema no fly-sheets were left. The youngsters simply stood together and didn’t disperse. Later they explained to RFE/RL it was meant to distract the attention of the police.

The third part of the action -- about forty people -- filed along Frantsysk Skaryna Avenue with portraits of Piatro Masherau and Frantsysk Skaryna. Several people also handed out fly-sheets. They managed to stand there for almost half an hour. Frustrated policemen called to their colleagues for public security department and detained a student who took a fly-sheet from the picketers. When he asked why they detained him, they answered he shouldn’t have taken the fly-sheet. The action participants decided not to wait for the riot squad police to come and went away a little bit earlier. They moved along Frantsysk Skaryna Avenue to the KGB office, holding the portraits in their hands.

The guys said the action would be held every Monday and Tuesday. The tactics would be changed with the aim to pass the information to as many citizens of Minsk as possible.