4 October 2023, Wednesday, 15:39
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'Belarus Has Its Future In Europe': Belarusians From Vilnius Celebrate Freedom Day

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'Belarus Has Its Future In Europe': Belarusians From Vilnius Celebrate Freedom Day

Hundreds of White-Red-White flags are in the centre of the Lithuanian capital.

Hundreds of Belarusians under White-Red-White flags gathered on Lukiškės Square in the centre of Vilnius to celebrate Freedom Day, the 105th anniversary of the independence of the Belarusian Democratic Republic.

Dapamoga, the Lithuanian-Belarusian foundation, organized the rally. The Belarusians sang the anthem of the Belarusian Democratic Republic “My vyjdziem ščylnymi radam” (“Come, We Shall March in Joint Endeavour”) and “Pahonia” (“Pursuit”), and then heard the address Ivonka Survilla, the President of the Rada of the Belarusian Democratic Republic.

Member of the Lithuanian Seimas Emanuelis Zingeris, Editor-in-Chief of the Charter97.org website Natallia Radzina, head of the Dapamoga Foundation Natallia Kalehava and others addressed the audience.

Emanuelis Zingeris congratulated the Belarusians on the real Independence Day. The Lithuanian MP noted that he understands how difficult the current situation in Belarus is. He also said that the Belarusian people are European people who will definitely achieve freedom, and the future of our country is in the European Union and NATO. MP Zingersis said that Lithuania will always be on the side of the fighting Belarusians. Also, the Lithuanian politician called to hold a minute of silence in memory of the Belarusian volunteers who died in Ukraine.

Then Natallia Radzina spoke. The Editor-in-Chief of the Charter97.org website noted the role of the Founders of the Belarusian Democratic Republic for the history of Belarus:

NATALLIA RADZINA

– 105 years ago, true patriots of Belarus declared the independence of our country. The conditions were extremely difficult - the First World War was ongoing, and the Bolsheviks were advancing. Nevertheless, the Belarusians found the strength and courage to take this important step. Now we are also in a difficult situation. The dictatorship has been ruling in the country for about 30 years. The dictatorship has become an accomplice in the war against Ukraine today. Russian troops are located on the territory of the country. Nevertheless, we have many more chances to achieve freedom for Belarus today. And we can do a lot.

First, it is necessary to help political prisoners. Thousands of people are in prisons today, and their relatives were left without help. I keep in touch with many families of prisoners of conscience and I know that the situation is extremely difficult. Therefore, each of us can and should provide assistance to the political prisoners. You can transfer money to funds you trust, but everyone can take care of at least one family of a political prisoner, because these heroes are suffering for all of us today. They sacrifice their health, their freedom and their lives for our future. Provide targeted assistance to the families of political prisoners. Don't abandon your heroes.

Second, it is necessary to provide assistance to independent media that are working for Belarus. Their work is extremely important, they convey to Belarusian people information about the developments in the country and developments in Ukraine.

Third, help is needed for the Belarusian volunteers who are fighting in Ukraine today. These guys are also sacrificing their lives for the free future of Belarus. Everyone can help the Belarusian volunteer units in any possible way. Someone can go to war personally, and someone can provide financial and humanitarian assistance.

Fourth and essential: it is necessary to increase international pressure on the Lukashenka regime, and it is necessary to demand stronger economic sanctions against the dictatorship. This is the work for diasporas. People inside the country cannot pursue sanctions, as they will be inevitably arrested for this. Diasporas in the countries of the European Union and the United States are obliged to hold demonstrations and meet with Western politicians, to demand from them even more severe pressure on the Lukashenka regime.

Now there is a threat that sanctions on Belarusian potash will be lifted. We know that the Lukashenka regime is lobbying for the removal of restrictive measures from this main export raw material. This is a major, insidious threat since the regime will receive billions of euros in this case. The regime will use the money for its repressive machine and for the continuation of torturing political prisoners behind bars.

There's a lot of talk about the synchronization of the sanctions against the Belarusian regime and the Russian one. Synchronization should take place as an increase in sanctions, not their easing. As we know, the West has not imposed restrictions on Russian potash. If the synchronization consists of the fact that the sanctions will also be lifted from the Belarusian potash, then this will definitely mean an indulgence for the illegitimate Belarusian ruler. We must do everything to prevent this!

Dear Belarusians, we have a lot of work to do and a lot we can do. Most importantly is that we must not lose faith and self-confidence. We are truly a European nation. I am sure that we will achieve freedom and become full members of the European Union in the future,” said the Editor-in-Chief of the Charter97.org website.