Watch again: Belarusians protest on anniversary of independence from Soviet Union

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By Euronews
Belarusians are returning to protest in Minsk
Belarusians are returning to protest in Minsk   -   Copyright  Sergei Grits/Copyright 2020 The Associated Press.

Belarusians are returning to protest in Minsk to mark the day when the country became independent after the fall of the Soviet Union.

The demonstrations on Tuesday come as nationwide protests flare after Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko extended his 26-year rule in an August 9 election.

On Sunday, an estimated 200,000 protesters flooded the capital, demanding Lukashenko resigns. 

Previous protests have resulted in a police crackdown with thousands being detained. Human rights groups have voiced concern over allegations that hundreds of others were beaten or injured.

Lukashenko made a dramatic show of defiance on Sunday against the massive protests, carrying a rifle and wearing a bulletproof vest.

He has refused to stand down.

He has said the demonstrations are part of a NATO plot to destabilise the country. NATO said those claims are baseless.

Lukashenko was declared the winner with 80% of the vote. The European Union says it does not recognise the result of the election.

Belarus declared independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. 

You can watch the rally live in the video player above.