By Kostas Onisenko
The Orthodox Church in Belarus called for peace and dialogue in the country. In an announcement, the Synod of the Orthodox Church of Belarus called on the people to stop the popular reaction, that is, the mobilisations against the President of the country, Alexander Lukashenko, which have been raging in the country for a week.
The Synod tries through the announcement to keep equal distances from the protesters and the government and focuses on the need for cohesion among people. At the same time, the Synod also referred, at one point, to “provocateurs” and “instigators”, whom it calls to stop provocations that “destabilise the country and divide the people.” Thus, the Synod, through the announcement takes, in a way, a stance in favour of Lukashenko, whose re-election in last Sunday’s election provoked a number of reactions from citizens who considered that there was fraud.
In the same announcement, however, the Synod called on the government to stop violence by the security forces and to bring justice to those who were beaten by the police or were unjustly taken into custody in the previous days: “We believe and hope that the country’s administration, which has rightly been called to respect and protect the people, will stop violence, will listen to the voices of the wronged and of those who suffered during this period of confrontation (resistance) and that it will bring before justice and denounce those who have been savage and cruel.”