With the remainder of the continent on coronavirus lockdown, it is still business as usual at Belarus.
Alexander Lukashenko, its president, has suggested drinking vodka, although the nation’s top-flight soccer league is the only one still playing in Europe.
However, there aren’t any lack of dissenting voices along with also the strategy being followed in Minsk has generated branches.
Dima believes the movement to prevent soccer everywhere in Europe is”ridiculous”, something he attributes to some”silly psychosis” from the”spoiled” west.
He proceeds to encourage his group, FC Dynamo Brest, that came into prominence recently when it chose to replace its stay-at-home lovers with mannequins.
However, his sexagenarian dad Alexander watches the group on tv in the home and is contrary to his eldest son visiting games.
“He’s playing with passion and places the lives of tens of thousands of Belarusians at risk.”
His criticism of Lukashenko isn’t political – he’d awarded Belarus’ long-time president his unwavering support, until today.
Few world leaders may match Lukashenko’s scornful derision of this COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition to drinking vodka, his additional eyebrow-raising methods for fending off the virus contain”turn the steam in the bathhouse”, “consume more garlic” and”sit behind the wheel of the tractor from the areas”.
“We asked people of age to become vigilant… he had been going to turn 80, so why was he out to the roads and still functioning?
As of April 21, Belarus has reported over 6,000 ailments and 51 COVID-19 deaths. As stated by 76,000 Belarusians was analyzed by April 16 from 24 static and mobile labs throughout the nation, according to the nation’s health ministry.
“Each of the victims were suffering from various chronic diseases,” a health ministry press release stated.
The ministry didn’t respond to Euronews asks for comment on coronavirus from Belarus along with the nation’s leading epidemiologists were reticent.
“A lockdown at this time could be a rash measure,” a physician in a Minsk hospital advised Euronews about the condition of anonymity.
“We see that a few nations, such as Sweden, haven’t implemented it, thereby putting a strain on the market.”
A testing period
Belarus tests individuals with symptoms for COVID-19, in addition to individuals who’ve been in close contact with confirmed cases.
Experts say that is too few.
Alexander Loban, a physician from the Belarusian city of Grodno, that has spent 16 years in Dutch hospitals, was one of the very first Belarusian medics to ring the alarm about Belarus’ method of dealing with the outbreak.
Before flying into the capital Minsk in the Netherlands at mid-March, he delivered an open letter to President Lukashenko, urging him to close down all boundaries.
Paramedics, followed by policemen, showed up in his door. They said he would only come from an extremely infected nation and insisted on carrying his fever. Together with 37.1℃ about the thermometer — that Loban now doubts — he had been taken to the hospital against his approval. He spent a week and was later published without any indicators of this coronavirus.
“I’m sure my hospitalization wasn’t for epidemiologic concerns, but for ideological reasons,” Loban informed Euronews.
“When the West hotels to lockdown and quarantine in controlling the pandemic, Lukashenko requires it brazenly’mere influenza’.
“An educated person would not talk such crap since the president… a meltdown awaits Belarusian hospitals in case the police continue downplaying the graveness of the circumstance.”
Loban considers COVID-19 instances in the nation will start soaring in the times ahead of time.
“I am certain that we aren’t hearing and won’t be seeing credible data on the range of the outbreak from the health ministry,” he added. “Especially about the death toll.”
The physician called the remarks of Belarus’ deputy health minister, Elena Bogdan, who stated in a briefing on 9 April that when a patient having coronavirus along with a list of chronic ailments expires, the reason for death ought to be attributed to the latter, since the virus from the body was”removed” through therapy.
“The method is foolish and in stark contrast with the rest of the planet,” Loban insisted.
Nevertheless, Belarus isn’t only Lukashenko, and associations, particularly in the capital city Minsk, are scrambling to take precautionary steps against the outbreak.
The Minsk Metro system gets the carriages cleaned daily and posts pictures of these on its site.
The Belarusian Orthodox Church, a predominant church in Belarus and also a dedicated supporter of this authoritarian president, isn’t taking any chances. It’s asked people to steer clear of churches for the time being and invited them to actively take part in masses stored online.
Based on SATIO, a Minsk-based market and opinion research firm, 62 percent of Belarusians, asked if they anticipate that the Belarusian health system at the face of a pandemic, reacted they feared its”collapse”. Just 17 percent, largely respondents at the countryside, said they trusted it and 13 percent, largely youthful, see the COVID-19 danger as”exaggerated”.
The identical survey revealed that two-thirds have begun to scrub their hands more frequently and, especially, a substantial 48 percent prevent public hotspots now.
With COVID-19 cases anticipated to grow further, President Lukashenko remains unabashed.
“Our priority must be and is our market,” he explained. “All that will pass, which we see occurring in Europe. On the other hand, the market will stay forever.”
He’s stated Belarus doesn’t have the”luxury” of placing itself under quarantine.
It’s namely the financial consequences of the pandemic the Belarusian president worries most, experts consider.
‘No plan whatsoever’
“Our greatest authorities feel that Belarus, fiscally and technologically, cannot manage (carrying ) the steps that many different nations have implemented. Thus the ignorance, the inconsistencies (of this data and the data on COVID-19), the unpreparedness and also the delay at the passing of all necessary conclusions.
“Many authoritarian regimes, such as that of Belarus, use emergencies to control political and civil liberty among other matters. Does the coronavirus weaken the Belarusian regime, but also the prolonged financial crisis, coupled with the brand new states of Russian oil imports, but nor also,” he underscored.
Lukashenko has lost one stalwart supporter — the elderly Аleksejev at Brest.
“I’m not the only person who turned away in the president throughout the health catastrophe,” Alexander explained. “Lots of my acquaintances did too — his foolhardy neglect is merely mind-blowing.”