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Lukashenko assumes foreign state behind protests in Belarus

Europe
20.03.2017
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Moscow (dpa) - Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, in power for more than two decades, said Monday that he believed a foreign state was behind a spate of protests in recent weeks in the authoritarian Eastern European country.

With money and support from the West, a "fifth column" has been attempting to destabilize Belarus, Lukashenko said Monday in comments carried by the BelaPAN news agency.

Lukashenko vowed that his government would react. "We can handle this. This is not a problem," he was quoted as saying.

More than 240 demonstrators have been detained in the former Soviet republic this month. The protests have mainly been against a new tax to be paid by the unemployed.

The Belarusian government initially allowed such rallies, but the police in recent days have clamped down on disorder.

Lukashenko said the domestic unrest was worrying him more than the deployment of NATO troops near the Belarusian border.

 

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