Large Protests Against Lukashenko Persist  

Protesters once again took to the streets of Belarus Sunday, the latest in nearly a month of demonstrations following disupted elections that left longtime president Alexander Lukashenko in power. Tens of thousands took to the streets of Minsk Sunday in numbers comparable to previous weekends, waving red and white opposition flags and chanting slogans. Human rights groups have said at least 70 protesters were detained Sunday. A police barricade with two water cannons is set blocking a street during an opposition rally to protest the official presidential election results in Minsk, Belarus, Sept. 6, 2020.Lukashenko, in power since 1994, claimed victory in elections August 9. Opposition parties, along with the United States and the European Union, say the poll was heavily rigged.     More than 7,000 protesters have been arrested, and widespread evidence of abuse and torture has been reported. At least four people were reported to have died during the demonstrations.  FILE – Belurus opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya takes part in an U.N. General Assembly online debate from Vilnius, Lithuania, Sept. 4, 2020.Belarus’ main opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya has been in Lithuania since the election for what she says is her own safety. In an interview with VOA, Tsikhanouskaya said she is working to organize new elections despite Lukashenko’s refusal to do so. “Our plan is absolutely clear. It’s organization of new elections, fair and transparent,” she said. 

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