Poland’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) strongly denounced the Belarusian regime led by Alexander Lukashenko on the third anniversary of Raman Bandarenka’s death, an opposition protester. Bandarenka, a 31-year-old artist from Minsk, succumbed to injuries inflicted by Belarusian security forces amidst the government’s brutal crackdown following the contested presidential elections in August 2020.
In a statement released on Sunday, the MFA declared Bandarenka’s murder as a stark symbol of the Belarusian authorities’ disregard for their own citizens and their aspirations for freedom. November 12 now stands as a somber reminder of the tragic events unfolding in Belarus, where countless innocent individuals face detainment, and hundreds of thousands seek refuge abroad.
The MFA characterized the regime’s repressions as both systematic and widespread, impacting a substantial portion of Belarusian society, including the Polish minority who face severe restrictions on language, cultural preservation, and historical memory. The ministry demanded the immediate release of all political prisoners and urged the Minsk authorities to engage in an open dialogue for democratic transformation, aligning with the people’s aspirations and ensuring the preservation of an independent state.
Expressing deep respect for the democratic sentiments of Belarusian society, the MFA acknowledged the country’s independent cultural figures, journalists, and politicians. The statement underscored Poland’s understanding and support for Belarusians’ connection to European historical legacy and their desire to strengthen ties with Europe.