First day of nationwide strike in Belarus

Since People’s Ultimatum expired at 23.59 on October 25, opposition leader Svyatlana Tsikhanouskaya called on Belarusians to join a nationwide strike. The main demands are Lukashenka’s resignation and the release of political prisoners.

According to her, a national strike will be the Belarusians’ next step to ‘freedom, putting an end to violence and holding new elections’.

“The state-owned enterprises; strike is a tool of economic pressure. And the strike of private companies is their manifestation of solidarity, which is equally important,” she stressed.

On Monday morning, about a hundred Hrodna Azot workers refused to take their shift, RFE/RL reports. Five police cars and two buses arrived at the enterprise; over ten workers and dozens of protesters were detained. The directorship says the plant is operating in its ordinary and usual course.

According to the press service of the Belarusian Oil and Chemistry concern Belneftekhim, the workers are not taking part in the strike.

BKM Holding. Minsk, 26 October 2020. Photo: Belsat viewers
Hrodna Azot. hrodna, 26 October 2020. Photo: Belsat viewers

However, by 2 pm (local time), there has been no confirmed information about any Belarusian enterprise’s completely withholding its production process. It is also hard to assess the scale of strikes and protests on the basis of contradictory and fragmented reports.

Belarusian workers share pictures and videos showing machines standing idle or meetings with superiors.

There are reports about striking workers at Minsk Electrotechnical Plant, Minsk Motor Plant (MMZ), Minsk Tractor Plant (MTZ), Minsk Automobile Plant (MAZ), Integral (Minsk), Khimvalakno (Hrodna), Atlant (Minsk), Belkard (Hrodna), BKM Holding (Minsk), Belvtorpolymer (Hrodna).

 

 

Lots of Belarusian students (Minsk State Linguistic University, Belarusian National Technical University, Belarusian State University, Belarusian State Medical University, Belarusian State Pedadogical University and others) are showing support for striking workers and employees:

 

The residents of Minsk are also forming solidarity chains today:

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