Dozens of detainees, one reported dead in post-election protests – human rights watchdog

At least 70 protesters have been detained in Minsk overnight into Monday, HRC Viasna reports.

According to Belarusian human rights activists, as of 10 am, the total number of the people detained in the past 24 hours is around 220, including at least 55 election observers.

After the election authorities announced the official exit poll’s results implying Alyaksandr Lukashenka’s triumph, thousands of people took to the streets in many cities and towns of Belarus. Claiming that the electoral theft took place throughout the country, the participants were set to show their discontent and express readiness to protect their votes.

Polling station in Minsk rehearses vote counting with known figures

However, OMON riot police made every efforts to disperse peaceful protesters in the Belarusian capital. People were teargased and beaten with batons; the police also played rubber bullets upon them, used water cannons and flashbang grenades.

“One protester reportedly died, according to a reliable source. The protester was reportedly run over by a police truck after the vehicle was steered into a crowd of demonstrators. Dozens injured protesters are in hospitals,” Viasna’s statement reads.

Paddy wagon hitting protester in Minsk. Video: Tatiana Zenkovich / EPA / Scanpix / LETA

The young man allegedly died of fatal brain injury which was the result of a special vehicle’s hitting him in Victors’ Avenue. Paramedics arrived at the scene, but unfortunately, emergency resuscitation was unsuccessful, human rights defenders report.

However, the Belarusian authorities have not confirmed the fact of the death during Sunday’s protests.

Belarusian CEC publishes preliminary election results