President replaces three university rectors amid protests

New rectors of three universities – two from Minsk and one from Brest – have been appointed by Belarus President Alyaksandr Lukashenka on 20 October. Where the former heads of these educational institutions will go is unknown, reports Belsat.

According to Lukashenka’s press service, Natallya Laptseva became the rector of the Minsk State Linguistic University (MSLU) (before that she headed the German language department there); Natallya Karcheuskaya (former deputy minister of culture) was appointed the head of the Belarusian State University of Culture and Art; and Brest State Technical University (BrSTU) is now headed by Alyaksandr Bakhanovich (ex-vice-rector for academic affairs of Belarusian National Technical University).

MSLU and BrSTU students took part in protests against the change of their rectors. Earlier, Lukashenka expressed dissatisfaction with student protests and threatened to make personnel changes. “The behaviour of some of the students shows, to put it mildly, their careless attitude towards higher education. This can lead to the loss of its value as a significant social stage,” he stressed. “University rectors are not doing enough. In the near future, within a week, we must solve the staff problem of such universities,” Lukashenka said at a meeting on 9 October.
Full report on the Belsat site