DISINFO: Repressions in Belarus are extremely small compared to Yellow Vests or BLM
US racial justice protests Repression yellow vests Council of Europe Human rights Protest

DISINFO: Repressions in Belarus are extremely small compared to Yellow Vests or BLM


Lukachenko has power and the demonstrators will be repressed. But in the end, the degree of violence and volumes of arrests are extremely small compared to what France has known, for example, with the Yellow Vests where police violence was much more serious. We are dealing with much lower volumes of violence than what is happening in the United States. We must not imagine that it is something that serious. There were already less people demonstrating.


Recurrent disinformation message using relativism to undermine the West and at the same time legitimatise low standards of democracy, in this case in Belarus.

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 cannot be described as extremely small.

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."

Regarding the widespread protests against racial injustice and police brutality, these broke out in the US after the death of George Floyd in police custody in Minneapolis on 25 May 2020. The protests followed several high-profile incidents involving African Americans and the police, invoking debates about racism in the US. Despite high polarisation in the US, the unrest is not a civil war. The situation was very tense and protests spread to all 50 states of the country. However, top military officials and police officers worked to de-escalate the situation and demonstrations became largely peaceful.

Meanwhile, 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.

More cases about Belarus can be seen at the following links: 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, The protests in Belarus are a colour revolution conducted according to Maidan scenario, Russia has neutralised many Western attempts to topple the Belarusian government, The EU continues to support a colour revolution in Belarus.


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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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