‘We Belarusians are peaceful people’ Photos from the second straight night of protests in Minsk
The protests that began in Belarus after the end of the presidential elections on August 9 have continued. Initially, the demonstrations sparked after election officials announced that incumbent President Alexander Lukashenko (Alyaksandr Lukashenka) — who has been in power since 1994 — had won the vote. Opposition candidate Svetlana Tikhanovskaya (Svitlana Tsikhanouskaya) didn’t recognize the official result. On Monday, August 10, mass demonstrations continued in the capital, Minsk, as well as in other cities across the country, with opposition protesters demanding a revision of the voting results. Special police units made violent arrests, and in several cases used stun grenades, tear gas, and rubber bullets against demonstrators (for more details, check out yesterday’s live blog). Belarusian police officials also reported the death of a protester in Minsk, who allegedly tried to throw an “unidentified explosive device” at riot police officers (the device supposedly went off in his hands and killed him). According to official reports, 2,000 people were arrested across the country during the second straight night of protests. While the number of wounded demonstrators remains unknown, police officials reported 21 injuries among law enforcement officers.