Updated at 17:25,07-01-2021

Belarusian president accidentally ​sparks international striptease

Maeve Shearlaw, The Guardian

Naked office selfies go viral after Alexander Lukashenko urges citizens to ‘get undressed and work till you sweat’

You know that feeling when you’re trying to give an inspirational speech but everyone takes their clothes off? No? Well, the Belarusian president does.

Alexander Lukashenko was talking about the importance of technology to the national economy when he urged citizens “to get undressed and work till you sweat”.

But citizens took the words of their authoritarian president literally, and started posting pictures of themselves naked at work, using laptops and other office equipment to protect their dignity.

Thousands of Belarusians have now shared pictures on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook using the hashtag #раздеватьсяиработать (#getnakedatwork).

“The president said this was necessary,” insisted one Instagram user.

#раздеватьсяиработать #беларусь #минск #it #performance #irm #irmcreative

Фото опубликовано IRM Creative (@irm.by)

#раздеватьсяиработать #музейбровки #ниднябезбровки #музей

Фото опубликовано Музей Петруся Броўкі (@museum_brovka)

Handymen and musicians got in on the action too:

Others imagined what would happen if Lukashenko followed his own advice:


Фото опубликовано David Holme (@daholme72)

The president may not have been expecting his citizens to follow the advice so faithfully. He had been intending to encourage people to “develop themselves” –which sounds very similar to “get undressed” in Russian, according to the Mail online.

The BBC reported that the hashtag has now spread as far as the Baltic states and eastern Europe.