Tikhanovsky studied at the physical and mathematical gymnasium, then graduated from the Faculty of Philology of the Francysk Skaryna Homyel State University. Later, he opened nightclubs in Homyel and Mazyr and organized concerts. He was engaged in video production, advertising and music videos.[6]
YouTube channel[edit]

Tikhanovsky says he became a blogger almost by accident. He organized a farmstead near Homyel and faced bureaucratic hurdles from local, regional, and national officials, then spoke of his difficulties with journalists.[6]

The YouTube channel “Country for Life” (Страна Для Жизни)[7] was launched in 2019 and managed to attract 140,000 subscribers during the year. The channel is dedicated to stories of ordinary Belarusians and real cases of entrepreneurs “which will help to build a country for life”. Tikhanovsky shoots a video on social and political topics and talks about the problems of people – mainly in the Belarusian regions.

Together with his team in a car with the logo “Real News”, Tikhanovsky spent more than a month driving around Belarus and interviewing subscribers, who told him about the problems in the city and the country on camera. The most popular video on the channel (almost one million views as of 30 May 2020) is the story of a woman from the town of Hlybokaye about her life and her attitude toward Lukashenko. Tikhanovsky’s YouTube channel also features video interviews with opposition politicians and businessmen.[8] On trips around Belarus, Sergei Tikhanovsky was constantly followed by cars with people monitoring him, presumably employees of the Belarusian special services.[9] . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

By May 2020, Tikhanovsky’s YouTube channel had garnered 140,000 subscribers;[7] by mid-July 2020, it had reached 243,000 subscribers, more than 12 times the number of subscribers to the state-run Belarus 24 satellite channel.[10] Independent anti-Lukashenko bloggers (including Tikhanovsky) were seen by the government as a major threat to its rule, as a media alternative to television, newspapers, and radio, which are principally controlled by the Government, and many were targeted by the authorities.[10]
Political activity[edit]
Anti-parade in Babruysk[edit]

On 9 May 2020, dozens of supporters of Sergei Tikhanovsky held an “Anti-parade” in Babruisk to express their disagreement with the Victory Day Parade in Minsk during the COVID-19 pandemic. The protest parade took the form of a protest motor rally. Police detained about 15 people after the motor rally.[11][12] Sergei Tikhanovsky was detained at that moment.
2020 election and protests[edit]

On 7 May, Sergei Tikhanovsky announced on his YouTube channel that he intended to become a candidate for President of Belarus, challenging Alexander Lukashenko and his decades long rule.[13][7] Prior to this event, on 6 May, he was detained by the Belarusian militsyya (police) in the vicinity of Mahilyow; the police threatened to break the glass of Tikhanovsky’s car, and failed to present a certificate to confirm that they were police officers.[14] Prior to that, a crowd of Tikhanovsky’s supporters in Mahilyow released a member of Tikhanovsky’s team from the police.[15] A day later, allies of Tikhanovsky were arrested, including a blogger from Slutsk, Uladzimier Niaronski.[16] The vans of Tikhanovsky’s team including Niaronski were chased by road police and two vans with members of the AMAP special police forces.[17]

After the arrests, Sergei Tikhanovsky’s supporters held a series of protests throughout Belarus. According to the Radio Liberty, 20 to 30 people were detained in Homyel, the home town of Tikhanovsky.[16] Viasna Human Rights Centre reports that at least 19 people who supported Tikhanovsky were brutally detained in

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.