Protests In Belarus Continue As Thousands Of Pensioners March In Minsk Downtown

Protests in Belarus, day 107. Empty Independence Avenue, blocked streets, closed Lenin Square metro station, and hundreds of law enforcers in black. This is what central Minsk looked like on Monday, 23 November. The reason? The weekly March of Seniors and Healthcare Workers, aka the March of Wisdom.

On their way from the Red Church to Yakub Kolas Square, the protesters were followed by security forces, who demanded them to disperse. The procession was repeatedly surrounded, divided in smalled parts and blocked. 

People reacted with “Get out, you [Lukashenko – Ed.] and your riot police!”, “Fascists!” and “This is our city!” chants. At some point, security forces in masks  and balaclavas attacked the rally of peaceful elderly women and men, at least four of them were detained and taken to police. Reports are coming in that, an ambulance was called to some of them.

This is the eighth March of Seniors, the first one took place on 5 October. The idea of the marches for retirees arose after the authorities began to detain and expel protesting students en masse. The elderly have decided that if young people are not allowed to express their position, then they should take matters into their own hands.

Some marches were marked by dramatic clashes with law enforcement officers, who used tear gas against pensioners after the latter managed to defend medics detained by law enforcers in front of the 1st Clinical Hospital. Read the stories of the undeterred and defiant seniors who keep taking to the streets no matter what.