Oleksiy walked through the streets of the capital city in the Fire Kingdom, waving a polite hand to anyone who sent him one and sampling all of the foods that were on display in the stands. There was a festival taking place and the midday was full of hustle and bustle from the citizens who were dressed in colourful clothes, decorating the streets, or standing behind food stands that Oleksiy sampled from.

Today was turning out to be a great day indeed. Nothing could possibly ruin his day no -

“Ahov, Oleksiy!” his mood instantly deflated like a balloon upon hearing that voice. He quickly put on a fake smile that he hoped wasn’t too obvious and reluctantly turned towards the person who called him.

“Lukash, how do you do?” he said with an audibly strained voice.

Local Towns Prepare for July 3 Festivities. Will Clapping Be Allowed?

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Belarus prepares to celebrate July 3, the day when Belarus was liberated from Nazis. The date is now dubbed an Independence Day, but in essence a fascist regime was swapped by the communist one, so Belarus did not become free on July 3. 

Traditionally festivities are to be held throughout the country including every single town in northwestern Belarus. Preparations are now in the final stages. Each municipality is planning various events. Some of the most typical are a parade, a concert, fireworks, etc. 

However, July 3 is generating some buzz not because of the official festivities but courtesy of online activists calling for another “silent” protest against Lukashenka’s policies. During the previous actions of the kind, people did nothing but stood and clapped. However, even for the innocent act of applauding, protesters were pulled to the police van. In northwestern Belarus, most protests went without arrests, but it’s always difficult to predict how the next protest will go. Not just activists but also journalists prepare for a possible detention. 

Police is already put on alert. The big question of the day - Will applauding be allowed since it’s an integral part of any festivity?