The authoritarian regime of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko is doing everything possible to prevent a revival of the protests that marked the second half of last year. Opposition leaders are in jail or in exile and new so-called “anti-extremist” laws prohibit even the opposition’s red and white colors on the facades of buildings, repainted to erase all traces of protest. Many opposition supporters struggle to maintain morale, but others are doing so by finding ingenious new forms of activism.
Outside the country, the opposition won a meager victory, with the exclusion of Belarus from the 2021 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, whose representative, the Galasy Zmesta group, presented a song that was considered a praise of the regime. But within the country, the repressive policy remains unchanged and many residents fear to express their discontent publicly. Report from our special correspondent, Gulliver Cragg with Elena Volochine.
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