Give the Citizens of Belarus a Voice!

European wide action in support of democracy in Belarus

, by Benedicte Roer

All the versions of this article: [English] [italiano]

Give the Citizens of Belarus a Voice!

Night. Dark. Cold. On the 15th of March, just before the elections of the 19th of March, JEFers from across Europe took to the streets to show their support for the oppressed civil society and opposition movements in Belarus.

Over a hundred statues in more than 20 cities from Skopje to Edinburgh were gagged, symbolically preventing them from speaking freely, much like the current situation of the people in Belarus. Signs stating “Give a voice to the citizens of Belarus” were also hung around their necks, clearly stating the demand of JEF.

Across Europe the media made extensive coverage of the JEF action. With its massive support from JEFers, Belarusian resistance movements, other NGOs and youth across Europe were able to give a strong message in support of democracy in Belarus.

The action was also covered in opposition-friendly media inside Belarus, ensuring that people there knew that youth across Europe care about their struggle for democracy.

A swedish girl as a live gagged statue

Meanwhile, inside Belarus, a JEFer organising the election monitoring was arrested and forced to leave the country, further highlighting the severe situation in Belarus (For more information on the arrest please click here). It is clear that we as Young European Federalists have to stand-up for freedom and democracy in our neighbouring country, and with this action JEF definitely showed that we can!

JEF’s message to European political leaders was crystal clear: we will not tolerate what is going on in Belarus, and we urge you to put pressure on the Belarusian and Russian authorities to change the situation!

If you would like to see the rest of the action you can check out the picture gallery of JEF-Europe and also download a power point presentation capturing the action in all the cities across Europe participating in this unique pan-European public action.


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