Publication: Monitor Volume: 3 Issue: 66

Up to 10,000 mostly young Minsk residents yesterday heeded the call of the Popular Front and of the legitimate parliament’s leaders and demonstrated against "annexation of Belarus by Russia." OMON troops charged at the demonstrators, injuring and arresting a number of them, and some protesters hit back with stones. The police also arrested and beat up several journalists in an apparent attempt to prevent them from covering the event. On the preceding day a smaller protest demonstration was nipped in the bud when 20 of those intending to participate were arrested. Former parliament chairman and CIS co-founder Stanislau Shushkevich was among them.

Leftist and pro-Lukashenko organizations, meanwhile, attracted few supporters for a meeting yesterday in favor of unification with Russia. The participants picketed the U.S. embassy — to denounce "the plans of Western capitalism to exploit the Slavic peoples" — and appealed "to the American working class to give the U.S. administration a rebuff." (UPI, Reuter, Interfax, NTV, April 2-3)

Ukraine-NATO Cooperation Gaining Momentum.