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Review of the Year: Belarus and Bulgaria rocked by anti-government protests

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Women block a police bus during an opposition rally to protest the official presidential election results in Minsk, Belarus, Saturday, Sept. 12, 2020.
Women block a police bus during an opposition rally to protest the official presidential election results in Minsk, Belarus, Saturday, Sept. 12, 2020.   -   Copyright  Tut.by via AP
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This year has been dominated by the coronavirus pandemic and lockdowns. But COVID restrictions didn't stop hundreds of thousands of people from taking to the streets to protest against their governments.

In parts of eastern Europe, such as Belarus and Bulgaria, a stronger wind of change is blowing.

Since mid-August, protesters have been gathering in the Belarusian capital Minsk to oppose the results of the country's presidential election. Long-time president Alexander Lukashenko, who has been in power since 1994, was declared the winner with an 80 per cent vote share. His critics say the election was rigged in his favour.

In Bulgaria, meanwhile, they have been daily protests since the summer calling for the resignation of Prime Minister Boyko Borissov, his centre-right government and the chief prosecutor. The protesters allege endemic corruption.