Belarusians greet Pontiff with national flags in hands

Today an inauguration ceremony of newly-elected Pope Francis is taking place in St. Peter’s Square in Vatican. The members of the Belarusian National Remembrance holding white-red-white flags are among those who have come to warmly welcome the Pope.

After the 1995 referendum the white-red-white flag is used as a symbol of the opposition to the regime of Aliaksandr Lukashenka, most notably at the protests after the 2006 and 2010 presidential elections and at mass rallies on Freedom Day celebrations as well as Dziady memorial marches. The flag is not officially banned from public usage, but is treated by the authorities as an unregistered symbol which means that demonstration of it by political activists or sports fans can lead to arrests and confiscation of the flags.


See also