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The Belarusian Kids Are Alright

Summary:
To mark the start of the academic year, Belarusian students have taken to the the streets in solidarity with the growing opposition protest movement. And as has increasingly been the case in recent weeks, authorities' responses were haphazard and inconsistent, reflecting their fundamental powerlessness. MINSK – Belarusian university students marked the start of the academic year on September 1 by announcing a strike. They planned to gather in Victory Square and then march to the Ministry of Education, where they would present a petition criticizing the authorities’ actions in the weeks since last month’s fraudulent presidential election. But almost immediately upon reaching the square, they encountered the riot

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To mark the start of the academic year, Belarusian students have taken to the the streets in solidarity with the growing opposition protest movement. And as has increasingly been the case in recent weeks, authorities' responses were haphazard and inconsistent, reflecting their fundamental powerlessness.

MINSK – Belarusian university students marked the start of the academic year on September 1 by announcing a strike. They planned to gather in Victory Square and then march to the Ministry of Education, where they would present a petition criticizing the authorities’ actions in the weeks since last month’s fraudulent presidential election. But almost immediately upon reaching the square, they encountered the riot police (OMON).

Unlike in other recent protests, the authorities showed little restraint in arresting demonstrators. But news of the harsh response spread quickly, prompting more students to take to the streets. As the ranks of university...

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