Lukashenko aide tells protesters elections were ‘fair,’ as president again pictured brandishing RIFLE in front of his residence
A crowd of protesters that assembled outside the home of the president in the Belarusian capital had the opportunity to talk face to face with one of his aides, Nikolay Latyshenok. However, once again, they were told the government considers the presidential election that handed victory to Lukashenko to have been “fair.”Also on rt.com Belarus’ anti-government protesters, law enforcement brace for possible showdown on Lukashenko’s birthday (PHOTOS, VIDEOS)
The official then called on the protesters to “resolve all issues in a peaceful way,” and informed them that the government was already working on the draft of a new constitution. Earlier, Lukashenko revealed he was considering the possibility of rerunning the election once the new constitution had been adopted.
Nonetheless, it appears the president was also prepared for a less peaceful scenario. At around the same time as his aide was chatting with demonstrators, Russia’s RIA news agency received a photo from Lukashenko’s spokeswoman in which Lukashenko was pictured outside his residence wearing what looked like a bulletproof vest and brandishing an assault rifle.
Last Sunday, the president was filmed wearing a similar tactical vest and carrying an AK assault rifle as he was flown over Minsk in a helicopter and again later, as he strolled toward his residence.
Belarus has been gripped by unprecedented protests for three weeks in a row, following the controversial vote, which the opposition believes was rigged. A heavy-handed police response to the first protests, which authorities later conceded was excessive, only added fuel to the fire and won more support for the opposition. On Sunday, some 100,000 demonstrators gathered near a war memorial in the country’s capital to demand the president’s resignation. Similar events on two previous weekends attracted just as many people.Also on rt.com WATCH: Lukashenko makes dramatic landing at Minsk residence carrying ASSAULT RIFLE & in tactical gear, as protesters line streets
Some of the protesters then marched towards the presidential residence, also known as the Independence Palace, where a large number of police and armored vehicles had been deployed to provide additional security. The heavy guard turned out to be unnecessary, however, as the crowd thinned out due to heavy rain and many people departed before they reached their destination.
Elsewhere in Minsk, demonstrations ended with some scuffles between protesters and law enforcement agents, and 125 people were detained, according to the Interior Ministry.
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