Some 3,000 opposition supporters have been rallying in Minsk, the capital of Belarus, for already two weeks. While police are watching, officers have so far not interfered. Since Nov. 24, despite an official ban, protesters have been demanding the resignation of President Alexander Lukashenko. Belarusians carry huge posters saying "Sasha, go away!" in urging Lukashenko to quit.
Presidential elections in Belarus are scheduled for Dec. 19. Opposition leader Nikolai Statkevich said that the rally is the opposition's "weapon to fight the dictatorship." On Dec. 6, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, who is criticized for his efforts to abolish opposition and independent media, said he would not let the opposition "tear the country into pieces."