The protests took place near the parliament in Lithuania. People demanded to stop the discrimination of unvaccinated citizens. 26 people were arrested and 15 police officers sustained injuries as LRT reported.
“A few thousand people gathered in Vilnius near Seimas on Tuesday to express disapproval over the planned restrictions due to the Covid-19. According to the police calculations, about 4,500 people gathered near the parliament,” the message says.
The protest started quite peacefully: in the morning, gallows were taken to the parliament; the funeral wreaths were taken in the day. The protesters reported to mass media that they stand against unfair restrictions for unvaccinated people that had to be approved on Wednesday, August 11.
After the meeting of the Seimas, some of the protesters blocked the exits from the parliament and drives from the inner yard. When the police started to push aside them from the building, the unrest started – the bottles, signal bombs were thrown at 70 police officers; while tear gas was used against the protesters.
The protests were ceased at about 02:00 a.m., the building of the parliament was unblocked; police reported about 26 detained protesters and 15 traumatized police officers, and three hospitalized.
Speaker of the Seimas Viktorija Čmilytė‑Nielsen stated that authorities informed the social activists about planned restrictions too early and it was underlined that members of the Seimas were among the protesters. Their names were disclosed; however, it is promised to investigate the involvement of the lawmakers in the unrests.
According to the mass media, Belarusian and Russian rhetoric was observed among the protesters and they conserved to be unfriendly in Lithuania. Due to this fact, some representatives of the government tell about the possible attempts of destabilization of the society by the foreign structures.
Finally, the government of Lithuania approved restrictions for people who do not obtain “certificates of possibilities”; however, not to the full extent. From September 13, unvaccinated citizens will be not allowed to visit spa salons, hairdressing salons, bars, restaurants, shopping malls.
After the protests, the lawmakers refused the paragraph about the ban for use of public transport and visiting hospitals. Besides, unvaccinated people are allowed to visit supermarkets, drug stores, optical stores, and dispensaries of veterinary medicine with separate entrances from the street.
On July 2, the Lithuanian government declared a state of emergency at the national level in connection with an increase in the flow of illegal migrants from Belarus. On July 7, the Prime Minister of Lithuania Ingrida Simonyte announced that a wall would be erected on the border with Belarus.
Poland and Lithuania urged the EU countries to increase the support of Lithuania amid the crisis with migrants and extend sanctions against Belarus.
In its turn, the EU noted that it is considering sanctions as an option to tackle Belarus migrants’ smugglers.