04 December 2015
The economy of Belarus shows a long-term negative trend. The need for structural reforms looks obvious even within the elite, and this need for structural reforms is desired especially by international creditors. In the political and military realm, Minsk struggles with Russia's attempts to influence it.
As Alieś Aliachnovič...
12 November 2015
Following “peaceful” elections in Belarus, the United States sent two medium-level diplomats to Minsk on 4-5 November. Bridget Brink and Robert Berschinski came to reiterate America’s willingness to uphold the “virtuous cycle” in bilateral relations when one's positive steps are responded to in kind.
Continuing this trend, the two countries may agree on...
12 June 2015
On June 10, US President Barack Obama extended sanctions against Belarusian leaders for one more year. Responding to the news, press secretary of the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Dzmitry Mironchyk observed a “clear improvement” in Belarus-US relations in recent years. In his view the decision is result of the sluggish US bureaucracy and lack of sensitivity to events in...
21 October 2014
In a somewhat uncharacteristic move, Belarus started working on a full-scale border guard on the Belarusian-Russian border.
Western sanctions are impeding the development of industrial cooperation between Belarus and Russia, which still hopes to draw CIS countries into its confrontation with the West.
The Belarusian authorities do not trust America, but they still want to...
22 September 2014
The Ukraine crisis has revitalised, if not improved, US-Belarus relations.
Due to his careful stance on the Ukrainian conflict as well as Vladimir Putin’s careless actions in the Crimea, Alexandr Lukashenka is no longer the main villain on the post-Communist bloc. Instead, he could become a peace broker between the warring parties.
A week ago, high-level representatives of...
19 June 2014
Alexander Lukashenka's participation in the inauguration of Ukraine's elect-president was among the top news items over the last two weeks on state-run Channel 1. Reporters were particularly enthusiastic in pointing out that the Belarusian leader stood out from other politicians present in the event because he received more attention from Western and Ukrainian media than others....
10 April 2012
Ambassador Kenneth Yalowitz served as the US ambassador to Belarus between 1994 and 1997. He arrived in Belarus a few months after Alexander Lukashenka was elected president and witnessed Belarus sliding from a relative democracy into authoritarianism. Ambassador Yalowitz agreed to share his thoughts about what was going with Belarus in 1990s and the current situation.
17 November 2011
This week could definitely be named "Belarus week" in Washington, DC. The North American Association for Belarusian Studies is holding a business meeting on 18 November. Another more political than academic event took place on the 15 November. The Cannon House Office Building of the US Congress hosted an audience that gathered to listen to the hearing on Belarus...
22 September 2011
01 September 2011
Belarus has returned to the spotlight of Western press coverage after brief periods of interest which followed the December 19th crackdown, subsequent international sanctions, and April metro bombing. The new reports focus on the IMF loan request and business relations between the West and Lukashenka’s government. An occasional mention of rights abuses appear in a few concerned...
20 August 2011
This week Belarus fulfilled its promise to retaliate to the US sanctions. Minsk suspended an agreement with the United States to give up its 220-kilogram stockpile of enriched uranium. What are the implications of this decision?
Under the December 2010 agreement, Belarus committed to send its enriched uranium to Russia by 2012, which would return a less purified grade product. To date,...