Belarusian cultural workers and doctors support Tsikhanouskaya’s ultimatum

Belarusian cultural figures recorded a video message in support of the “People’s Ultimatum”, which ex-presidential candidate Svyatlana Tsikhanouskaya put forward to the country’s authorities. The appeal was published on the YouTube channel of the Belarusian Foundation for Cultural Solidarity.

More than twenty people took part in the recording, including People’s Artist of Belarus Zoya Belakhvostsik, frontman of J: Mors band Uladzimir Puhach, director and actor Vasil Kalach, musician Lyavon Volsky, actor Aleh Harbuz and others. Cultural figures urged Belarusians not to visit cultural institutions.

“We, free creators, only we decide our destiny, we ourselves create culture. Culture is us. We call on our supporters, spectators and listeners in Belarus to refuse to visit cultural institutions. Sit at home with your children, read a book, draw, watch a movie, listen to music,” the appeal says.

In addition, they urged colleagues who work in state cultural institutions not to go to work starting from October 26.

“Take the slave out. Find the reason, get sick. No corporate parties and other custom-made events. Go out to your yard. Walk along the streets of your city. Only street solidarity actions in the districts! If you can’t help going to work, make your position visible. Give a sign that you are with us,” wrote the cultural workers.

An open letter in support of the “People’s Ultimatum” was also signed by over a thousand doctors. They demanded that the security forces stop the violence and investigate all facts of bodily harm and torture, release political prisoners and other detained protesters, as well as declare the presidential elections in Belarus held on August 9 invalid and hold new elections.

“We believe that the current crisis situation requires immediate legal resolution,” the doctors said in an open letter.

It notes that “in the event there’s information about attempts at pressure, threats of dismissal or other violations of the rights of medical workers who signed this letter,” the Belarusian medical community will act in solidarity.

On October 13, ex-presidential candidate Svyatlana Tsikhanouskaya put a “people’s ultimatum” to the Belarusian authorities. She gave 13 days for Lukashenka to announce his resignation. In addition, she called for an end to violence in the streets and the release of all political prisoners. In addition, Tsikhanouskaya said that if all requirements are not met, a national strike of all enterprises will begin on October 26, roads will be blocked, and sales of state-owned stores will collapse.