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Mainstream, VOL LVIII No 39, New Delhi, September 12, 2020

Belarus: They are all in prison, or they have been thrown out of the country - A statement from Svetlana Alexievich, Nobel Laureate

Friday 11 September 2020

Another Unknown Person Ringing at My Door:
A statement from Svetlana Alexievich, Nobel Laureate and Chair of Belarusian PEN

September 9, 2020

There is no one left of my friends and associates in the opposition’s Coordination Council. They are all in prison, or they have been thrown out of the country. The last, Maksim Znak, was taken today.

First they seized our country, and now they are seizing the best of us. But hundreds of others will come and fill the places of those who have been taken from our ranks. It is the whole country which has risen up, not just the Coordination Council. I want to say again what I have always said: that we were not attempting to start a coup. We did not want to split the country. We wanted to start a dialogue in society. Lukashenko has said he won’t speak ‘with the street’ – but the streets are filled with hundreds of thousands of people who come out to protest every Sunday, and every day. It isn’t the street, it is the nation.

People are coming out to protest with their small children because they believe they will win.

I also want to address the Russian intelligentsia, to call it by its old name. Why have you remained silent? We hear very few voices supporting us. Why don’t you speak when you can see this proud little nation is being crushed? We are still your brothers.

To my own people, I want to say this: I love you and I am proud of you.

And now there is another unknown person ringing at my door.

This statement was originally published in Russian by Belarusian PEN.

Translated by Sasha Dugdale.

(Courtesy: PENtransmissions)

[Related information added here by Mainstream: Ambassadors of Lithuania, Germany, Poland, Sweden, Romania, Slovakia and the Czech Republic gathered together in Nobel Prize winner Svetlana Alexievich’s apartment in Minsk on 9 September 2020 in an effort to prevent her arrest by Lukashenko’s secret police.

Photo shared on Twitter by Ann Linde The Swedish Minister of Foreign Affairs



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