Increasingly bizarre Belarusian dictator now bans schoolchildren from clapping
Harvard University recently awarded the dictator of Belarus an alternative Nobel prize for mad dictatorial behaviour. That was before he banned school kids from clapping as a "dissident" activity
Fresh from receiving a Harvard University "idiocy" award, as the beleaguered Belarusian opposition billed it, for extraordinary behaviour, the dictator of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, has gone one better, this time in a decree against schoolchildren.
Earlier in September, Harvard gave Lukashenko the so called Ig Nobel Prize for prosecuting a one-armed man for clapping disrespectfully against the regime.
Dissidents and student groups opposed to the regime have taken to using ostensibly legal means to express their dissatisfaction so as to avoid jail. This has included Facebook organised group clapping exercises as well as eating ice cream in public places. Both types of activities have attracted violent reprisals from the secret police, still known in the former Soviet republic as the KGB.
Thus far, this has only applied to adults.
However, according to the semi-independent news agency Belapan and opposition sources, last Friday schoolchildren in the town of Zhlobin were given strict instructions, against the threat of arrest, by the KGB not to clap during an end of Harvest Festival parade, for fear of offending Lukashenko who was due to visit the town the next day.
Belapan reported that KGB agents and riot police had taken up residence ahead of the event in classrooms which had been cleared of children. The children were allowed to wave Belarusian flags and the event passed off without incident.
Lukashenko, long decribed as Europe's last dictator, has murdered numerous political opponents and imprisoned thousands more.
Harvard's Ig Nobel Prizes are parodies of the originals, with Ig standing for "ignoble.
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