Belarusians in Estonia call for political arrests to stop in Belarus ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

Protest in Freedom Square
Protest in Freedom Square Source: ERR

Belarusians in Estonia are demanding an end to political arrests and free elections in their homeland. On Saturday dozens of people gathered at Freedom Square in Tallinn with banners and placards.

One of the protester's reason was the recent decision made by the Belarusian authorities to not register two opposition candidates for the presidential election which will take place on August 9.

Approximately 1,000 Belarusian citizens living in Estonia will be able to vote. Similar protests have taken place all over the world.  

Andrei Obozov, the organizer of the Tallinn demonstration, said about 800 people have been arrested in Belarus since the beginning of the election campaign.

"People are protesting because the authorities are arrogant, they do not protect them, they do not feel equal," Obozov said.

Kalev Stoichesku, diplomat and political activist, told Russian ERR portal (link in Russian) that the current president will not allow strong competitors to participate in the elections

On July 16, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a statement on the situation in Belarus: "Estonia continues to express concern over the restrictions on peaceful gatherings and freedom of speech ahead of the upcoming presidential elections in Belarus." 

Freedom House says Belarus is an authoritarian state in which elections are openly orchestrated and civil liberties are tightly restricted.   


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Editor: Katriin Eikin Sein

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