Belarusian Ambassador to Slovakia Igor Alexandrovich Leshchenya has expressed solidarity with protesters in his homeland, which is currently witnessing mass protests following the recent presidential election.
In a video published on YouTube on August 15, he said he was shocked by the torture and beating of his compatriots.
Leshchenya, who took the ambassador post in Slovakia in 2016, served as the assistant for foreign affairs of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko between 2002 and 2006, the SITA newswire reported.
A strong signal
Slovakia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Ivan Korčok (SaS nominee) called the statement fundamental.
“His words confirm our evaluation of the current situation in Belarus, which is so serious that the representative of Belarusian diplomacy has also been openly critical of it,” Korčok wrote on Facebook. “It’s a strong signal from a senior Belarusian diplomat who has expressed support to his compatriots with his brave and clear attitude.”
Leshchenya has shown extraordinary bravery as he has been the very first Belarusian diplomat to express solidarity with the protestors, said Pavol Demeš, a leading foreign policy expert who also served as the minister for international relations in the early 1990s.
Slovakia active too
Meanwhile, people in Slovakia have organised several events to point to the current situation in Belarus and support demonstrators in their fight for freedom and democracy.
Starting on August 10, the silent protests for Belarus have been organised every day at 18:00 in front of the Belarusian Embassy in Slovakia. The organisers are ready to continue until the dialogue between the current ruling powers and the opposition starts, SITA wrote.
They have also sent an open letter to Korčok, signed by 121 people, in which they express support for the current actions of the ministry and specified questions they consider important in this matter.
Activists also organised a discussion in Bratislava about the current situation in Belarus, SITA wrote.
Meanwhile, a protest was held on August 15 at SNP Square in the Slovak capital.
The representatives of Bratislava’s Old Town borough raised a flag of Belarus at the local authority building to express support to demonstrators, too.
17. Aug 2020 at 11:32 | Compiled by Spectator staff