Tuesday 11 December 2018 | 08:25

Uladzimir Matskevich: The street protests in March may attract more people

25.02.2017  |  Society   |  Aliaksei Jurych,  EuroBelarus
Uladzimir Matskevich: The street protests in March may attract more people

However, it is unlikely for any spark to cause the fire of revolution in the given circumstances.

According to various estimates the "March of Angry Belarusians", which was held in Minsk on February 17, brought from 3 to 10 thousand people to the streets. The analogues protest in Homel attracted 2,000-2,500 people, and political actions were also held in Brest, Vitsiebsk, Grodna and Mahileu. People protested against the notorious "decree on parasitism".

Does it enable the discussion about the appearance of a new wave of protests in Belarus?

Uladzimir Matskevich, philosopher and methodologist replied to the question of "EuroBelarus"  Information Service.

- What did make people step over their fear and protest publicly?

- It has been quite a long time since the crackdowns and force methods were used against the protesters. So the fear grew away a bit.

Most of the protesters comprise the traditional electorate of the opposition parties, these people would go to the protests at any time. So I would not exaggerate the strength of this protest.

On the other hand the enthusiasm can make the street protests in March attract more people. I do not believe we should expect a "hot spring", but there is indeed a rise of some street activity.

- What is the protest potential of the society now?

- If we failed to raise a real wave of protests among the entrepreneurs, then the current development will end just the same.

The authorities have made sure the “Law on Parasitism” is futile, Lukashenko, in fact, did not freeze the document but hinted on a weak possibility that he may revise it after a while. I think that will be the end of it.

- Repeal or revision?

 - Most likely, revision. People who can afford paying this tax have already done so, others knew that the state has no leverage so they haven’t paid and do not intend to do it. But the most vulnerable part of the population suffers. I think the authorities will reconsider the categories covered by the Decree and relieve the tension somehow.

- Is the Lenin's saying "The spark will kindle a flame" inappropriate in this case?

- Someday, perhaps, mass protests will serve as a trigger for some changes in the country.

But we shouldn’t count on it today. Revolutions happen when there are distinct expectations of change in the society. Today most of the angry people expect only local, sometimes cosmetic reforms that do not lead to any fundamental change but relieve tension.

- What is the purpose of the Russian propaganda so actively exploiting the "parasites" protests in Belarus?  

- Russian media has been preparing informationally to something, perhaps, to the use of force against Belarus and to political and diplomatic pressure on us for a long while. Therefore they use any excuse. In this sense, the Russian information war seems extremely dangerous to me. Although I do not see any possibility to use it as a trigger for dramatic changes in Belarus. 

Other news section «Society»

The monitoring of accessibility was presented in Stolin
The monitoring of accessibility was presented in Stolin
On May 28, the city hosted a presentation of the results of the project "Equal to Equal" which was dedicated to monitoring the barrier-free environment in the city.
“They think if the legs don’t function, neither functions the head.”
“They think if the legs don’t function, neither functions the head.”
In Babruysk, wheelchair users are fighting discrimination.
The real work of the Convention depends on all interested communities and organizations
The real work of the Convention depends on all interested communities and organizations
What results has the campaign "Agenda 50" given, what helps to implement the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in the regions?
The Convention is a fight against fears, barriers and stigmata
The Convention is a fight against fears, barriers and stigmata
Experts in Valožyn have determined that the quality of people’s life depends on their awareness.
The Convention should become a "living tool”, rather than remaining just an ordinary document
The Convention should become a "living tool”, rather than remaining just an ordinary document
On March 3, members of the campaign "Agenda 50" from different Belarusian cities met in Minsk. The campaign is aimed at the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
The main thing is one’s personal motivation for full active life (PHOTOS)
The main thing is one’s personal motivation for full active life (PHOTOS)
There are being implemented three projects under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities campaign in the city of Babruysk.
One man does not make a team, but united we are able to do a lot
One man does not make a team, but united we are able to do a lot
In Ščučyn, people with disabilities learned to be leaders and to advocate their interests.
Barrier-free environment – it is not a ramp, but a means of independence (PHOTOS)
Barrier-free environment – it is not a ramp, but a means of independence (PHOTOS)
In Stolin, social organizations and local authorities are implementing a project aimed at independent living of persons with disabilities, and creating local agenda for the district.
Polish experts: We say “equality” and you say “inclusion”
Polish experts: We say “equality” and you say “inclusion”
Will creation of local agendas be an effective tool in ensuring rights of persons with disabilities in Belarus, just as it was in Poland?
“It is impossible to talk about persons with disabilities separately from the rest of the country”
“It is impossible to talk about persons with disabilities separately from the rest of the country”
The understanding that all people have equal rights has been the basis for social changes, including those related to disability issues, in Poland.
Andrei Yahorau: Everything depends on people in the regions
Andrei Yahorau: Everything depends on people in the regions
A social project "Equal to Equal" has been launched in Stolin district under the campaign "Agenda 50".
“Agenda 50": the problems can be solved only by solidarity and equal treatment
“Agenda 50": the problems can be solved only by solidarity and equal treatment
Five Belarusian cities are open to the campaign launched there to translate into practice the provisions of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Statement of the BNP in connection with the prosecution of the Belarusan independent trade unions
Statement of the BNP in connection with the prosecution of the Belarusan independent trade unions
The Belarusan National Platform of the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum issued a statement in connection with the criminal prosecution of the leaders of the Belarusan independent trade unions.
Sofia Sadovskaya: Parents do not understand why one needs contemporary Belarusan art
Sofia Sadovskaya: Parents do not understand why one needs contemporary Belarusan art
For the last five years, the Children's Creative Workshops (CCW) acquaints children with fine arts in a game form.
Larysa Bycko: Heritage can only be preserved together
Larysa Bycko: Heritage can only be preserved together
Many people came to the premiere of the play "Memory Shelter" to the village of Stuly in the Pruzany Rajon [District].
Zmicier Surski - We should pay tribute to the Belarusan poster
Zmicier Surski - We should pay tribute to the Belarusan poster
In 1991, poster artists from the Soviet Union sent 120 posters to the triennale in Japanese Tayama.
Oksana Gaiko - Our audio guide of Brest is a monument to Holocaust victims
Oksana Gaiko - Our audio guide of Brest is a monument to Holocaust victims
The center of Brest can now be studied with the help of an audio guide called Brest Stories Guide - however, meanwhile, only one of the city pages - anti-Semitism and the Holocaust.
To preserve heritage and to become valuable for each other
To preserve heritage and to become valuable for each other
On June, 16th, in the Minsk-based creative space CECH, the results of the work of the international program "CHOICE - Cultural Heritage - Opportunity for Civic Engagement" were presented.
Belarusan human rights defenders’ view on human rights activity and questions of cooperation
Belarusan human rights defenders’ view on human rights activity and questions of cooperation
We present a research results report of Belarusan human rights organizations sector.
Historical and Cultural Heritage and Its Substance
Historical and Cultural Heritage and Its Substance
Our expert in issues of forming identity on local visual codes, professional designer Michal Aniempadystau prepared a special report for our meeting in Brussels and further at a Belarusian discussion.
Gintautas Mažeikis: The relation of political field and arena in the framework of information war

In his report, philosopher Gintautas Mažeikis discusses several concepts that have been a part of the European social and philosophical thought for quite a time.

"Vilnius Consultations": Key points and recommendations on the future of EU Eastern Partnership

On September 11, the inaugural „Vilnius Consultations“ conference was organized by Vilnius Institute for Policy Analysis and Lithuanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Belarus's Lukashenko alleges “fifth column” plot as unrest continues

Belarusan President Lukashenko said on Tuesday a “fifth column” was plotting to overthrow him with the help of foreign-backed fighters, days before a planned street protest in Minsk against a new tax.

The real work of the Convention depends on all interested communities and organizations

What results has the campaign "Agenda 50" given, what helps to implement the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in the regions?