Disinfo: Europeans are indifferent to repression of peaceful protesters


In Europe people are used to violent repression against demonstrators, for instance, Emmanuel Macron repressed the yellow vests and the French people remains passive.

In Belarus however, repression is not acceptable, that is why there is a distrust between the power and the people. Alexander Lukashenko is not legitimate any more although he was just elected with 60% of the votes (and not 80% as announced officially), or maybe even less than 50% and he would have needed a second turn.

We in Europe, are savages who permit repression of peaceful demonstrators, in Belarus on the opposite people don’t accept any repression even from the little father of the people.


Recurrent disinformation message using relativism to undermine the West: in the EU, the population would allegedly accept the dictatorship and its repression whereas in the east and in particular Belarus, the people would not accept any misconduct from its leaders.

European countries may experience waves of protest more frequently than Belarus as freedom of assembly is granted by the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. In France, since November 2018, the Yellow Vest movement demonstrated every Saturday. Whilst there have been discussions around police violence against the Yellow Vests, the brutality shown to protestors in Belarus is much stronger and contrasts with their peaceful character.

The EU has condemned the violent repressions in Belarus and called the elections neither free nor fair: "State authorities deployed disproportionate and unacceptable violence causing at least one death and many injuries. Thousands of people were detained and the crackdown on freedoms of assembly, media and expression intensified. We call on the Belarusian authorities to release immediately and unconditionally all detained. Furthermore, credible reports of domestic observers show that the electoral process did not meet the international standards expected of an OSCE participating State."

In Belarus, despite the narrative of Lukashenko, protestors, journalists or even random people on the streets going to fetch groceries were taken and detained by unidentified people working for the police. Cases of torture and frightening and humiliating treatment plus threats of gang rape were documented. Many people ended up in hospital following beatings in detention. Bodies of people beaten to death were found in the forest: including that of Konstantin Shyshmakov after he refused to sign a false protocol during the elections, and that of Mikita Kryutsov who took part in the protests on 12 August. The internet was shut down on several occasions.

Though the repression increased the scale of the protest, there are more fundamental issues motivating demonstrators. The expert for Sputnik admits that massive frauds happened during the elections. The lack of justice, opportunities and confidence in their institutions can motivate people for protest. In Europe, the justice system can prosecute policemen who misbehaved and massive fraud at elections is not practised.

Read similar cases: Repressions in Belarus are extremely small compared to yellow vests or BLM, The EU criticised the elections and repression in Minsk, but in fact, the EU and its members have the same lack of democracy and repression, EU is showcasing hypocrisy in its handling of Belarus.


  • Reported in: Issue 212
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 10/09/2020
  • Language/target audience: French
  • Country: Belarus, France
  • Keywords: yellow vests, Emmanuel Macron, Protest, Alexander Lukashenko


Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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