April 12, 2011 |
A powerful blast rocked the Minsk metro during evening rush hour Monday, killing 11 passengers and injuring 126 others in a busy downtown subway station. Belarus law enforcement agencies said the explosion, on a platform at the Oktyabrskaya station as a train arrived, was an act of terrorism. The blast shattered windows, injuring people inside the train and on the platform of the station, located near the presidential headquarters in the center of the Belarusian capital. "I just entered the station to go pick up our daughter from my mother-in-law's when I felt a growing smell of burning and saw many people rushing out, some of them screaming," Ivan Kaplun, an engineer who lives close to the station, said in a phone interview.
February 6, 2011 |
Most actors visiting Chicago end the brief biographies in theater programs with cute shout-outs to mentors or loved ones. Not the seven performers from the Belarus Free Theatre, who usually ply their trade in Minsk in the Republic of Belarus, the former Soviet republic famously called "the last remaining true dictatorship in the heart of Europe" by former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. Actor Aleh Sidorchyk's program note concludes with "He has been arrested for his professional activities.
January 22, 2011 |
Saying that Belarus has exhausted the limits of upheavals, authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko on Friday took the oath of office for the fourth time amid accusations of fraud in the December election and a crackdown on the opposition. The 56-year-old Lukashenko, who has run the country for 16 years and now begins a new five-year term, said his reelection was a legitimate outcome in a democratic state. His government will "safeguard security and stability against plots from within and outside the country," he said, and stop political movements such as the one in Georgia in 2003, known as the Rose Revolution, and another in Ukraine in 2005 known as the Orange Revolution.
December 20, 2010 |
After 16 years in office, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko appeared headed for another five-year term in a controversial election Sunday that was quickly followed by violent late-night street clashes and accusations of vote fraud from human rights groups. Final results announced by the state's central election commission indicated that the autocratic 56-year-old leader, who adheres to a bygone Soviet economic model, received 79.7% of the vote, after 100% was counted. Opposition leaders called on their supporters to launch a protest in downtown Minsk's Oktyabrskaya Square before firm results were announced.
September 3, 2010 |
Barely seven weeks after the end of the World Cup, Europe's major soccer powers returned to serious competition on Friday as qualifying for 2012 European Championship began. Based on one game alone, France already is in trouble. Les Bleus have a new coach in 1998 World Cup winner Laurent Blanc. They also had a large and supportive crowd of 76,000 behind them at the Stade de France in Paris. Neither came into play as France crashed to a 1-0 home defeat to Belarus, which is ranked 78th in the world compared to France's No. 21. "It is a pity," Florent Malouda, the team's captain, told the booing fans after the final whistle.
February 26, 2010 |
Life philosophy and Jeret "Speedy" Peterson finally merged, rather than collided, and produced a memorable result at the Olympics. All or nothing. Sitting in fifth place after one jump made his decision incredibly simple in the final of the men's aerials. The American didn't come all the way to Vancouver after living through what he called "enough turmoil and drama for three lifetimes" to leave the Hurricane on the shelf. And so, at 6:48 on Thursday night, he went down the ramp with speed, and almost everyone in the viewing area at Cypress Mountain knew what would happen.
February 22, 2010 |
The United States created a wide-open 2010 Winter Olympic hockey tournament with its 5-3 upset victory over Canada on Sunday at the Canada Hockey Place in Vancouver. Before the preliminary rounds were completed Sunday, with Sweden defeating Finland, 3-0, and Russia beating the Czech Republic, 4-2, most experts had Canada vs. Russia as the likely gold-medal matchup. The seedings after the preliminary round: 1. United States; 2. Sweden; 3. Russia; 4. Finland; 5. Czech Republic; 6. Canada; 7. Slovakia; 8. Switzerland; 9. Belarus; 10. Norway; 11. Germany; 12. Latvia.
February 21, 2010 |
Venus Williams successfully defended her Dubai Championships title Saturday, beating Victoria Azarenka of Belarus, 6-3, 7-5, in the final in the United Arab Emirates. Williams broke Azarenka a third time at 5-5 in the second set and served out for her 42nd singles title on the WTA Tour. Williams didn't lose a set, and in the final she lost her serve once against Azarenka, who is ranked No. 6, one spot behind Williams. Williams served well, hitting seven aces and winning 80% of her first serves.
February 20, 2010 |
Scrappy, physical Belarus came tantalizingly close to upending defending gold medalist Sweden and pulling off another Olympic hockey upset. Konstantin Zakharov clanged a shot off the crossbar about 12 minutes into the third period Friday shortly after his team had pulled to within a goal, and Andrei Stas forced goaltender Jonas Gustavsson to make a quick arm save on a desperate try to tie the score with 40 seconds left, triggering gasps...