Protests are taking place across the country today in memory of Bondarenko, who was killed, presumably by security officials
Solidarity actions in memory of a resident of Minsk who was killed yesterday after a scuffle in the courtyard of his house began in the early morning. Hospital doctors were the first to take to the streets of Minsk, before starting their work. At noon, numerous chains of solidarity lined up throughout Minsk, as well as in many other cities in the country. The memory of the deceased Belarusian was also honored in Warsaw, San Francisco, Los Angeles, London and other cities abroad.
Yesterday memorial gathering, which took place in the courtyard where the story Roman Bondarenko had been caught by the police, ended late at night. People came there from all over the city for more than five hours. Heavy traffic on the streets leading to this courtyard continued throughout Friday.
Today, people took to the streets carrying candles, flowers, flags and black ribbons. The chains stood along avenues, near cinemas and all major business centers. The chain was lined up by doctors, students, workers in office buildings and large state enterprises, and just concerned citizens who lined up in chains in their residential areas. In many places, there were dispersals and detentions.
Hundreds of people came to the evening mass at the Archcathedral in Minsk to pray for Roman Bondarenko. The church was unable to accommodate everyone, and some people prayed and lit candles in the street.
On the evening of November 11, masked people arrived at the “courtyard of change” in Minsk. They cut off the white-red-white ribbons. Local residents were outraged by the actions of the intruders. Among them was Roman Bondarenko. According to eyewitnesses, he said something to unknown people in masks, for which they tied him up and immediately dragged him into the car. There was no fight in the yard. The next day it became known that he was being taken to the police station, and from there, already in a coma, to the hospital, where he died.
What did the Investigative Committee say today? According to it, in the courtyard, “there was a fight between aggressive local residents who were hanging the ribbons and the people taking them off.” The report notes that the police officers who arrived later found the man with bodily injuries and signs of alcoholic intoxication, for which he was taken to the police “to clarify the circumstances of the incident.” Emergency hospital doctors and medical documents testify that Bondarenko was brought to the hospital completely sober.
Lukashenko calls the coronavirus pandemic a screen behind which global players are trying to redivide the world
According to Lukashenko, the world today lives in conditions of serious shocks, and the planet is going through a systemic crisis. “The coronavirus is just a pretext, a screen under which global players are once again trying to remake the world in their own way,” Lukashenko said. In his opinion, these players have plans in the post-Soviet space, including Belarus.
Meanwhile, today the number of COVID-19 cases in Belarus has broken a new record. During the day, 1,167 new people were infected, while, until recently, official figures never exceeded 1,000 per day. In total, there are 111,622 people in the country who tested positive. Over the entire period of the spread of infection in the country, 1,033 patients died. Even though few people trust the official figures, they are impressive.
In the first wave of the pandemic, a lockdown was not introduced in the country, and only now the country began to introduce a mandatory face mask regime. The fact is that Lukashenko from the very beginning considered the pandemic an unnecessary “psychosis” ignoring its danger, which means that there was no epidemic in the country at the highest level. No official quarantine measures were taken.
Lukashenko’s statements about the virus were often absurd, out of touch with reality and offensive to his own people, who, meanwhile, were becoming infected and dying. He believed that the dying were themselves to blame because they led an unhealthy lifestyle. While playing hockey, he said that the best medicine is an ice rink, a refrigerator, where there are no viruses. Later he stated that the virus can be treated with vodka, gatherings by the fire, butter, and cheese. He also said that a tractor and work in the fresh air would cure everyone in the village.
It was then, even before the falsifications in the presidential elections, that Lukashenko’s rating plummeted, and protest moods arose among a large number of citizens. The Belarusian people began to grow into a civil society capable of standing up for their rights. At that time, additional funds to help doctors were collected by citizens on their own, high self-organization appeared despite the inaction of the authorities.
Belarusian Wargaming opens an office in Lithuania
The recognized leader of the game industry Wargaming has decided to open a development office in Lithuania. Wargaming’s Global HR Director Matt Haradon, in particular, said that “Vilnius is an ideal location for opening a new office of the company.”
Wargaming plans to expand the staff of the Lithuanian office to several hundred. Managers from Prague, Kyiv and St. Petersburg will be involved in managing the new office. The total number of employees of Wargaming Limited Group is 5500 people.
Earlier, the world’s largest developer of software and digital platforms EPAM announced that it was opening a new office in Vilnius. This Belarusian company has made Fortune's 100 Fastest-Growing Companies list for the second year in a row as the Top IT Services Company. EPAM Systems, Ltd. employs more than 38,000 people.
The political and economic crisis is not the most favorable factor for investing in a country, and doing business in it becomes too risky. Therefore, many companies in the IT sector immediately began to think about relocation to Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania and other countries.
Of the 3,200 IT specialists surveyed at the end of September, a third confirmed that their companies are ready to move employees abroad in whole or in part.
A third of the respondents admitted that a decision on relocation hasn’t yet been made in their companies, the management is monitoring the development of events.
The same number said that their companies are not going to change locations, but are ready to help employees with the move if needed.