Why does the West allow itself to interfere in Belarus, with funds, coordination and technology of colour revolutions, after it caused the 2014 coup in Ukraine, and the subsequent division in the country? Why does it allow itself to recruit an opposition that openly works for its interests day and night, and then it is surprised by Russia's defence of its interests, lands and sovereignty?
The US and Europe are demonising Belarusian authorities. They assert that Belarus is the source of threat for regional and international security. The aim of it is to justify any actions against Minsk.
Recurring disinformation about the US and Europe plotting against Belarus.
West is reacting to events in Belarus, including oppression against civil society and the inadequate actions of Minsk, i.e. incident with the Ryanair flight 4978.
Widespread protests have been ongoing in Belarus since August 2020. These were triggered by discontent with the results of the Belarussian presidential elections in August 2020 which were not monitored by independent experts and saw Lukashenka re-elected as president for the sixth consecutive time since 1994. Both the EU and the US referred to the elections as neither free nor fair and refused to recognise Lukashenka as the legitimate president of Belarus. According to international election monitoring organisations such as OSCE and Civil Rights Defenders, every single one of the last five presidential elections in Belarus has been unfair and unfree, which is the primary reason for the public discontent.
The protests were organised by civil activists and opposition politicians and attended by tens of thousands of citizens. Belarusian police met them with violent force, with thousands of citizens being subject to police brutality and torture. According to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the organisation had received “450 documented cases of torture and ill-treatment of people deprived of their liberty” by 1 September 2020. In October 2020, the Council of the European Union imposed sanctions against 44 individuals for repressing and intimidating peaceful protesters. Some 40,000 supporters of the opposition have been sanctioned or arrested and most of the opposition’s leadership is either detained or has fled the country. Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, who was Lukashenka’s primary opponent in the elections, fled to Lithuania in August 2020.
The threat of the Belarusian regime to security in Europe was shown by the incident with Ryanair flight 4978 from Greece to Lithuania. On Sunday, 23 May 2021, the plane was forced to turn back minutes before crossing the Lithuanian border and land in the Belarusian capital. The pretext for landing in Minsk was a false report about the bomb on board. At the moment when the plane changed course, it was closer to Vilnius airport than to Minsk. The plane was forced to land in the Belarusian capital by a Belarusian military aircraft. To land in the Belarusian capital was not the Ryanair pilots' decision.
Belarusian opposition journalist and a critic of Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka, Raman Pratasevich was detained during a repeated security check of passengers. Belarusian authorities are persecuting him due to activities in reporting on the 2020 presidential election on his NEXTA Telegram channel used by the country's opposition. The Belarusian security service, KGB, has listed him as a terrorist (Read more about Pratasevich here).
The EU condemned Belarusian action against civil plane and the detention of Pratasevich. In a declaration on behalf of the EU on the forced diversion of Ryanair flight FR4978 to Minsk on 23 May 2021, the High Representative called for the immediate release of Roman Pratasevich. This was followed by a European Council statement, in which the EU leaders called for targeted individual and economic sanctions as well as to ban overflight of EU airspace by Belarusian airlines and prevent access to EU airports of flights operated by these. On 4 June 2021, the European Council introduced a ban on the overflight of EU airspace and on access to EU airports by Belarusian carriers of all kinds.
See more examples of disinformation linked to events in Belarus: Eastern Partnership, the tool of Russophobes in the big game against the East, failed in Belarus; Belarus saved Europe by allowing the Ryanair plane to land in the country; Protests in Belarus controlled by a primary American command centre in Warsaw.