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Europe’s Tiananmen Square?

As expected, the electoral results from Belarus were a load of cobblers. Now the unexpected protests have started, with an estimated 5,000 brave protestors supporting the opposition candidate, Milinkevich, and declaring the elction null and void.

Thousands of protesters thronged the main square of the Belarusian capital on Sunday in defiance of a government ban, refusing to recognize a presidential vote that appeared all but certain to give the iron-fisted incumbent a third term.

The crowd hooted when a large video screen broadcast a live statement from the Central Election Commission chief, who announced results that showed President Alexander Lukashenko headed toward overwhelming victory in Sunday’s vote.

The protesters chanted “Long Live Belarus!” and the name of the main opposition candidate, Alexander Milinkevich. Some waved a national flag that Lukashenko banned in favor of a Soviet-style replacement, while others waved European Union flags. Milinkevich arrived at Oktyabrskaya square later.

These are the results from the election thief:

The elections chief, Lidia Yermoshina, said Lukashenko had won 89 percent of the vote, according to returns from nearly one-fifth of polling districts. The results virtually guaranteed a third term for the authoritarian leader who has ruled the republic since 1994.

“Lukashenko cannot have won 80 percent!” he said, referring to exit polls conducted by two groups the opposition says are loyal to the government and released just hours after voting began that projected he would win more than 80 percent of the vote.

“Cannot! Cannot! Cannot!” the crowd chanted.

Let us remember that Lukashenko has no qualms about viewing all of these protestors as terrorists. Russia will stand idly by, with the satisfied smile of Reynaud, and the EU will wring its hands, a pity it isn’t its own bloody neck!

However, I am quite pessimistic about the outcome. Lukashenko has the support of stagnation amongst the majority of the population. Only those whose future hopes have vanished under this regime will be in the square tonight.

Now we wait for Lukashenko’s move…frostbite or tanks?

5 comments to Europe’s Tiananmen Square?

  • Uain

    Didn’t Lukashenko sign a treaty of submission, er, ah,
    understanding on economic and cultural issues with (Ras)Putin a year or so ago?

  • Mike Lorrey

    Everybody don’t forget your dioxin masks!

  • I have to say I’m somewhat scpetical that they’ll succeed, too. But, the thing about these post-post-Soviet revolutions, is that they tend to unexpectedly snowball, catching everyone by surprise, so I wouldn’t rule it out entirely.

    Everyone’s gone home from the October Square protests now but, as a couple of bloggers have pointed out, the same thing happened on the first night of the Orange Revolution in Ukraine.

    Milinkevich has called on people to come out again tonight – and that will be the true test of how committed people are.

    I have to say, I’m encouraged by the fact that last night’s protest went off completely without incident. I hope that encourages the people of Belarus to feel safer to come out onto the streets, too.

  • Record Straightener

    Well. whatever it was, it wasn’t “another Tienanmen Square”, because there was no massacre there: