All sectors of society, from workers and students to entrepreneurs and retirees, are participating in the protests.
The protest rally last Sunday in Minsk turned out to be perhaps the largest in the history of the country - according to various sources, from 100 to 200 thousand people took to the streets in a city with a population of less than two million. They also protested in other cities - Grodno, Vitebsk, Lida, even in small Novogrudok. In Gomel, however, not many people came to the protest rally, but there were a lot of security officials and they quickly detained the protesters.
The riot police even "accepted" 73-year-old Yeva Bykovskaya (pictured on the right), the pensioner then told TUT.BY about all the "delights" of detention - communication with riot police, a trip in a paddy wagon and a few hours at the local police department. After the experience, she goes to a psychologist.
“I’m not one of a timid dozen, but after what happened the night didn’t sleep and I’m crying all the time", - the edition quotes the words of Yeva Bykovskaya. A resident of Gomel still cannot find answers to questions that haunt her. Chief among them: where did some security officials get so much cruelty?
The first time she went to a protest march of pensioners - few elderly people gathered for it in Gomel, but a lot of police. But Yeva Romanovna was not frightened and tried to talk to the security officials who came to disperse the action. She told them about what was happening in Belarus and called for an end to the violence:
- I said what I know, what I heard from the people who were detained. How they were beaten and mocked, but the police told me that this was not true.
Last Sunday, October 25, she again decided to go outside, despite the fact that last time some of the protesters were detained. On the way, she saw how the police detained two residents of the city, peacefully standing with flowers.
- I say: "Let them go! They don't do anything". Suddenly, I looked - and a whole cloud of riot police was coming at us. Two people came up to me. One pleasant one, bends down and whispers: "If you walked out of here". And the second one is so healthy! - with anger: "Have you come again?"
At the next crossroads, she already ran into a whole "wall" of people in balaclavas, there were detentions around: riot policemen in front of Yeva Bykovskaya grabbed two young men. And when she tried to intercede, a minute later she was taken into the minibus by the arms.
- The riot policeman hands me over to his colleagues and says: "Her father was a policeman." This phrase immediately made me sick. How can you say that? Yes, my father went through the whole war, reached Berlin, returned, his entire family died under the bombing. Everyone is a wife and children. It was such a big trouble for him! He later married my mother, and when I appeared, I was named after his deceased daughter. How was it for me to hear that?
While she was comprehending what was said, a flurry of swearing and swearing fell upon her in the minibus:
- "You, bitch, what are you walking around here? What do you want? Be silent!" And so the policeman shouted for several minutes. I'm not fearful, but downright limp.
The pensioner was driven around the city for a long time, then transferred to a paddy wagon and only a few hours later was taken to the ROVD.
- I am very strong, I move a lot, I do physical education, but I was in some kind of prostration, my legs were wadded, I barely climbed to the third floor.
There, the protesters had their fingerprints taken and a protocol was drawn up for participating in the rally, despite all objections that the rally as such in Gomel did not work out.
She was released home late in the evening and ordered to come to court. The pensioner did not sleep all night and wondered how the security officials could insult and hate their own people like that. "This is real genocide, how are they going to live with it later?"