September 17 was marked with a Women’s Forum which took place in Minsk unannounced and with all its details secret. The Belarusian society has questions in this regard, such as:

  • What sources was such a large-scale event financed from (booking the Minsk Arena, transportation costs to bring the delegates, fees for the Russian performers, etc.);
  • Why was the Forum secret and closed to anyone interested to attend;
  • Who were the women present at the Forum and whose interests do they represent.

Message communicated by the Women’s Forum

  • Representatives of the Belarusian Union of Women present and speaking at the Forum under the slogans and posters “For Belarus”, “For Lukashenko” speak on behalf of the patriarchal authorities.
  • Deputy Minister Bogdan (being also candidate Lukashenko’s trustee during the 2020 election) stated that “in the last quarter of a century, women of Belarus have turned from housekeepers to female leaders”. But then Lukashenko concluded: “Men will sort it out”.
  • Abusive and humiliating remarks were part of the rhetoric of the women participating in the Forum.
    People protesting across Belarus were called from the stage “leaders of a destructive sect”, “a mad crowd”, Tikhanouskaya and Kalesnikava were referred to as “a lady whose horizons are limited by her kitchen” and “a flutist trying to play some melody on a foreign flute”.

Fem Group’s response message:

  1. We unite with all the women protesting in any way against the election rigging and the unprecedented violence the authorities subjected the peaceful citizens to.
  2. We are certain that abusive speech based on the difference of beliefs is unacceptable between women.
  3. We support women who represent our interests as a social group when going out under slogans “A friend for a friend” and “One together and all for one”.
  4. We share the women’s desire and need to speak out, among other things, their political beliefs considering themselves a subject of the changes occuring in Belarus.

We can’t be stopped, we can’t be broken!

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