Balloon Launches Mark Opposition To Belarus's Lukashenka

Opposition demonstrators in Belarus have continued their extended protests against Alyaksandr Lukashenka's rule by releasing red and white balloons into the sky.

The balloons, chosen because red and white are used as a symbol by the opposition, were released in small demonstrations that took place in the capital and other cities on December 27.

In Minsk, hundreds of people answered the call to release balloons, with their actions posted to the Telegram channel of RFE/RL's Belarus Service and other social media.

Several participants were reportedly arrested, and a heavy police presence was reported in the capital.

Belarus has been rocked by protests since August 9, when Lukashenka, in power since 1994, was declared the winner of a presidential election that many Belarusians and others charge was rigged and actually won by opposition challenger Svyatlana Tsikhanouskaya.

There have been more than 30,000 detentions since the protests began.

With reporting by dpa