The current national flag of Belarus was formally adopted on June 7, 1995, following the result of a referendum voted on by the Belarusian people in the previous month. This new design replaced a historical flag used by the Belarusian People's Republic of 1918, before Belarus became a Soviet Republic, and again after it regained its independence in 1991. The current flag is a modification of the 1951 flag used while the country was a republic of the Soviet Union. Several flags used by government officials and agencies were based on the national flag.
A few groups have continued to use the white and red flag, though its display in Belarus has been restricted by the government of Belarus due to its association with Nazi collaboration during the Second World War. That flag is used in protests against the government and by certain elements of Belarusian diaspora.