Belarusian leader says 20 foreign-funded militants arrested

Denis Melyantsov of the Belarusian Institute for Strategic Studies, a Minsk-based think-tank, said Lukashenko’s statement was intended to quell the demonstrations by casting them as part of a foreign conspiracy.“The goal is to discredit protests and keep people from joining them,” he said. “The authorities want to show that the protests are rooted in foreign interference, not public discontent.”