Detentions ahead of Freedom Day celebrations (updated)
A number of regional opposition activists have been reportedly detained this morning.
Zhodzina police detained local activists of the United Civil Party Yury Silkin.
Polatsk police detained European Belarus member Viktar Kalesnik and another activist who refused to give his name.
The police of the town of Haradok, Vitsebsk region, detained Leanid Autukhou, local leader of the Belarusian Popular Front.
All the detainees were going to take part in the authorized demonstration in Minsk.
Simultaneously, Minsk police detained activist of the Belarusian Christian Democracy organizing committee Vadzim Kabanchuk, as he was driving to a plaza outside the Academy of Sciences, the location of the Freedom Day meeting.
At about 4 p.m. Hrodna police detained local human rights defender Uladzimir Khilmanovich, as he was laying flowers under the monument to the 1863 anti-Russian uprising heroes. According to another human rights defender Viktar Sazonau, Mr. Khilmanovich was taken to Hrodna Leninski District Police Department.