Traditional march in Minsk marks Chernobyl anniversary

Some 500 people took part in a traditional "Charnobylski Shlyakh" (Path of Chernobyl) demonstration staged in downtown Minsk on Saturday to mark the 28th anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear accident.

The demonstration began at 4:00 p.m. near the Kastrychnik movie theater amid heavy police presence. There were many plainclothesmen who filmed members of the crowd, while uniformed police stood near entrances to the Akademiya Navuk subway station.

The crowd displayed Belarus’ historically national white-red-white flags, emblems of opposition organizations and signs protesting the construction of the nuclear power plant in the Hrodna region.

At about 4:30 p.m., the crowd started walking in a procession along Independence Avenue and Surhanava Street to Peoples’ Friendship Park in Bangalore Square for a final rally.

On their way to the remote park, some demonstrators chanted “Zhyve Belarus!” (Long Live Belarus) and “Slava Ukraini!” (Glory to Ukraine).