MINSK (Sputnik) – Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said on Thursday the number of his supporters who had taken to the streets across the country amid the post-election unrest was around 3 million people, which he describes as a “great force.”
“The rallies in support of peace, tranquillity and the incumbent president have already been attended by about 3 million people. This a great force – 3 million people,” Lukashenko told Belarus’ state news agency Belta.
According to the Belarusian president, his supporters are “calmer” and include “veterans, retired people and professionals.”
“That is how we would have the number of people who voted for us, the 80 percent,” Lukashenko added.
A wave of protests engulfed Belarus following the presidential election on 9 August, in which incumbent President Alexander Lukashenko won a sixth consecutive term, gaining over 80 percent of the vote.
The country’s opposition refused to recognise the results, claiming that the election was rigged. Supporters of the Belarusian president staged their own rallies after Lukashenko stressed that daily strikes at major companies, including vehicle and fertiliser manufacturers, as well as demonstrations, are dealing a significant blow to the economy.