Interior Ministry threatens to use lethal weapons against protesters

This was stated by First Deputy Interior Minister Henadz Kazakevich in a video message published by the press service of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

“We note the gradual fading of the protest movement — both in terms of coverage and area,” said Kazakevich.

According to him, the protests which have shifted mainly to Minsk have become “organized and very radical”. He adds that at the rallies in the capital last Sunday, the security services had “stones, bottles, knives and sharpeners thrown at them”.

“On behalf of the Interior Ministry, I state: we will not leave the streets and will ensure order in the country. Interior Ministry officials and servicemen will use special means and lethal weapons if necessary,” the deputy minister warned.

During the recent big march more than 600 people were detained, and there were people injured as a result of severe beatings by law enforcement agencies. The authorities used water cannons, pepper spray, flash grenades and rubber bullets.

According to human rights activists, at least 5 people have been killed and thousands injured since the beginning of the crisis in Belarus. There have been no criminal cases open for torture so far.