In the face of undiminished public protests against Alexander Lukashenko’s stolen election, the country’s Interior Ministry threatened to use live ammunition to disperse the crowds in future demonstrations, which the ministry claimed were becoming “extremely radical” and organised.

This followed a demonstration on Monday by mainly older people, some carrying the slogan “Grandmothers are with the people.”

The ministry also made a point of saying on Monday that more than 700 people were arrested on Sunday for unlawful assembly, and 570 of the detainees were yet to come before a judge.

The violence used in most of Sunday’s arrests marked a return to the brutal force used against earlier demonstrations following the August 9 vote that Lukashenko claimed he had won with more than 80 percent of total votes.

Last week the accreditations of all foreign journalists were cancelled.

Lukashenko enjoys the support of Putin and China.

PHOTO: Lukashenko brandishes weapon following the first peaceful weekend demonstration against the stolen election