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Lukashenka: We can't cancel Victory Day parade
A military parade in Minsk / Euroradio
A military parade in Minsk to mark 75 years since the victory in World War II is likely to take place on May 9 as planned, according to Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko. Speaking at a meeting with the government to discuss the epidemiological situation in the country on May 3, he said:
"I must say that we cannot cancel the parade. We simply can't. I have thought about it for a long time."
He argued that those fighting at war could die from viruses and other diseases, but "they did not feel it at times and did not think about it." President Lukashenko is concerned with "what people will say" if he cancels the parade, reports BELTA.
"Perhaps not right away, in a day or two, they will say that we got scared," Lukashenko said.
Judging by the mood in society, Belarusians are scared indeed but not because the government will scrap the parade. They are frightened that people will be forced to attend as spectators at a time when the COVID19 epidemic is peaking in Belarus.
The head of state warned the organizers that if the parade takes place, "they should not drag anyone to attend," adding that if someone fears and worries about his or her health, it is understandable. At the same time, he stressed that there are many people who want the parade to happen.
"Thousands and thousands of people want this event to take place," Lukashenko said.