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Nearly 250 detained in Belarus protests

FILED - Belarusian opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya. Tikhanovskaya has called on the international community to show solidarity with the women in Belarus. Photo: Bernd von Jutrczenka/dpa
FILED – Belarusian opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya. Tikhanovskaya has called on the international community to show solidarity with the women in Belarus. Photo: Bernd von Jutrczenka/dpa

dpa/GNA – At least 245 people were detained at protests in Belarus against President Alexander Lukashenko, according to human rights group Viasna.

Opposition groups had called for large rallies on Saturday against the long-time authoritarian leader, but this attempt apparently did not succeed.

The activists had mostly gathered in smaller groups on the streets.

Images and video footage posted online showed police using violent tactics to suppress the demonstrations that did take place.

There have not been any larger anti-government protests in Belarus since security forces brutally cracked down on mass protests last year following the election on August 9, in which Lukashenko claimed victory despite allegations the vote was rigged.

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