Belarusian groups in Switzerland are to protest in Lausanne this week ©BSSF

Belarusian groups in Switzerland are to hold a "Sport stands with Belarus" protest march in the Olympic Capital of Lausanne this Friday (October 23).

"We are calling on the Federal Office of Sport and local Swiss sport organisations and institutes, sports clubs, teams, fan clubs, associations, and individual athletes to condemn the violence and repression against peaceful participants of Belarusian protests and any politically motivated pressure on the athletes and sport professionals," said a statement issued by the Swiss Belarus Association with support from the Belarusian Sport Solidarity Foundation (BSSF).

The march is planned to begin at 4pm local time at the Olympic Museum and make its way to International Olympic Committee's (IOC) headquarters on the shores of Lake Geneva.

Participants will be asked to wear face masks and use disinfectant "in accordance with the recommendation of health authorities".

Organisers have called on Swiss sports organisations to support the demonstration by "issuing a statement to the IOC" using the #StandWithBelarus hashtag.

"We would draw your attention to the crimes against humanity, ongoing gross human rights violations and repressions perpetrated by Alexander Lukashenko and his regime in Belarus, and specifically, to the crimes, violence and repression directed against Belarusian athletes, members of sport teams and representatives of sport industry in Belarus," the statement added.

They also want a boycott of events held in Belarus, "demanding that participation of Swiss athletes, teams and organisations in any sports events held in Belarus, including any online events organised by Belarus, is suspended".

The group wants "participation of representatives from the National Olympic Committee of Belarus (NOCRB) and the Ministry of Sport of Belarus in any official events held in Switzerland, or organised by or with Swiss organisations and athletes, including any online events" to be "suspended".

Protests have continued in Belarus since the disputed re-election of Alexander Lukashenko as President in August ©Getty Images
Protests have continued in Belarus since the disputed re-election of Alexander Lukashenko as President in August ©Getty Images

Athletes founded the BSSF and around 900 signed an open letter, protesting about the validity of the Presidential election.

A dossier compiled by the protest group has revealed some 40 sporting personalities have been subjected to intimidation or worse for their role in anti-Lukashenko protests since August.

Some were beaten by security forces others lost jobs, funding or were denied access to sports facilities.

Olympic basketball player Yelena Leuchanka, national rugby captain Maria Shakuro, muay thai competitor Aleksandra Sitnikova and American football player Igor Boyar have all been sentenced to spells in prison.

Lithuanian National Olympic Committee President and IOC member Daina Gudzinevičiūtė has offered support after a meeting with triple Olympic swimming medallist and BSSF founding member Aliaksandra Gerasimenija in Vilnius.

Gudzinevičiūtė thanked Lithuanians "for their support of Belarus, which is very important for our neighbours in this difficult situation".

"We have communicated with the Belarusian Sports Solidarity Fund and we are ready to support athletes who may come to Lithuania to train,"Gudzinevičiūtė added.

The IOC is investigating the allegations made by Belarusian athletes that they have been discriminated against for speaking out against Lukashenko or participating in demonstrations.

The NOCRB, which Lukashenko also heads, has been threatened with sanctions if the investigation finds it has breached the Olympic Charter.