On August 23rd, we stood together against authoritarianism in Belarus, against One-Man Rule in the neighborhood of Lithuania. Yes, I’m talking about Alexander Lukashenko’s authoritarianism.

As Lithuanians, we feel the nation of Belarus very well. 31 years ago, together with Latvia and Estonia, we made a big step towards freedom from the Soviet Union. It was a peaceful political demonstration where two million people joined their hands to form a human chain for 675.5 kilometers (419.7 mi) across the three Baltic states—the Baltic Way. And we made it. On the 11th of March, 1990, we became the first independent Baltic state.

I was standing with hundreds of thousands of other people on Sunday for Belarusian people’s freedom. I’m standing to show all coming aggressors—I’m not afraid. While politics play games, people make changes today.

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On the anniversary of the Baltic Way on August 23, Lithuanians joined hands in solidarity with their neighbor, Belarus

Just like 31 years ago when 2M people from the Baltic States stood in a human chain for 675.5 kilometers as a peaceful political protest

In the 21st century, we are still independent—I can easily travel around the world and to many countries. I don’t even need a visa. I’m a sport and travel photographer who has worked during the past two Olympic Games in Rio in 2016 and PyeongChang in 2018. I can also count 3 Dakar Rallies in South America and the last one in the Middle East, Saudi. Two years ago, I visited the USA and Mexico for the Baja 1000 race. I did it because I’m a free man.

We repeated history with a Freedom Way of 50,000 people—from Vilnius to the border with Belarus, which is currently fighting for democracy and freedom

The human chain was stretching more than 30 kilometers

Dressed in white, Lithuanians expressed their support for opposition to President Alexander Lukashenko’s rule

In 2019, I was working in Minsk, Belarus with the National Olympic Committee of Lithuania at the 2nd European Games and I saw something similar to what my parents told me about living in the Soviet Union. I met many locals—they are people like us, people who want to live free. At the same time, I saw many people who are reconciled to fate, who have limited abilities to create a better tomorrow for themselves and the coming generations.

Since the election in Belarus, the country has been swallowed in daily mass peaceful protests that were met with extreme police violence

Solidarity rallies and human chains were also held in other countries around Europe and outside it

Here are more photos from the Freedom Way by other photographers:

Image credits: bertatil

Image credits: cucomaio

Image credits: irmantassky

Image credits: photobyrokas

Image credits: bertatil

Image credits: photobyrokas

Image credits: seskaitis

Image credits: photobyrokas

Image credits: cucomaio

Image credits: seskaitis

Image credits: seskaitis

Image credits: seskaitis

Image credits: seskaitis

Image credits: irmantassky

Image credits: seskaitis

Image credits: seskaitis

Image credits: irmantassky

Image credits: seskaitis

Image credits: seskaitis

Image credits: photobyrokas

Image credits: irmantassky

Image credits: irmantassky

We all are humans. We all deserve to be free

Image credits: seskaitis