Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko sits atop the money jar surrounded by protesters chanting “Stop Banking for the Dictator!”
This is one of the signature black and white hand-drawn images that pop up in the anti-Lukashenko protests around the world from New York to London to Stockholm.
The cartoons are published under ‘Creative Commons’ license by Belarusians in Exile (BiE), a New-York-based nonprofit group that aims to restore democratic institutions in Belarus.
Every two weeks, the group releases cartoons that highlight different sides of the dictatorial rule of the president Alexander Lukashenko: Arms dealing and money laundering for Syria and Iran, beating up protesters, or trying to sell products to Europe despite sanctions.
The latest installment in the series shows how Belarusian State companies seek banking services from major Western financial institutions, such as Deutsche Bank or Standard Chartered Bank, according to Belarusians in Exile.
“Alexander Lukashenko is a dictator, and the situation with human rights in Belarus is terrible. But one cannot ignore the fact that Belarusian president is a little bit too dictatorial. Cartoonishly dictatorial. And we are employing cartoons to bring attention to Belarus and hope that the media, the politicians and the citizens of the US and the EU will pay for attention to this country,” says Ilya Lushnikov, BiE representative.
“We were thrilled to learn that our cartoons are used in the protests and in the media and blogs and hope that more people will support our cause,” adds Lushnikov.
Belarusians in Exile together with other major Belarusian groups have called on the UK, the EU, and the US government to expand political and economic sanctions against Belarusian State companies and individuals that generate profits for the Lukashenko regime.
BiE cartoons are available to the media and bloggers for free under Creative Commons license.