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Belarusian Activists Protest Against Construction Near Memorial Site

A protester chained himself to a truck on February 24.

Dozens of activists protested for a fifth day against the construction of a business center next to a protected memorial area in Belarus where at least 30,000 people were killed and buried by Soviet authorities in the 1930s and 1940s.

Construction works that started on February 16 continued on February 24 despite the protest at the Kurapaty preserve on the outskirts of the capital, Minsk.

Protesters are demanding an immediate halt of the construction works, which they say desecrate the memory of thousands of victims of the Soviet state under dictator Josef Stalin.

Leaders of opposition parties and movements have been participating in the protest.

The protesters have set up tents at the site in order to stay around the clock.

During the night on February 22, at least 15 masked men with wooden bats attacked the protesters' camp, injuring one activist.

Activists say they suspect Minsk city authorities were behind the attack.

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    RFE/RL's Belarus Service

    RFE/RL's Belarus Service is one of the leading providers of news and analysis to Belarusian audiences in their own language. It is a bulwark against pervasive Russian propaganda and defies the government’s virtual monopoly on domestic broadcast media.