17 February 2017
From January to early February 2016, Belarus and Lithuania drifted further apart as their diplomats exchanged tart-tongued statements over the safety of the Astraviec NPP and Belarus’s sovereignty. Alexander Lukashenka, who remains unwelcome in the EU, travelled to more sympathetic Egypt and Sudan.
The Belarusian authorities continued with their efforts to restore the...
31 January 2017
In 2016, Belarusian diplomats succeeded in getting rid of most Western sanctions, improving the international legitimacy of the national parliament, regularising dialogue with Europe, and converting Poland from a strong critic into a good partner.
Nevertheless, they failed to make Lukashenka fully presentable to his peers in Europe, alienated Ukraine’s political elite, botched...
20 October 2016
Belarus and Poland are moving closer towards a rapprochement, with Belarusian foreign minister Vladimir Makei paying a working visit to Warsaw on 10 October.
His Polish counterpart, Witold Waszczykowski, seems to have a personal affinity for Makei; Waszczykowski trusts that President Alexander Lukashenka’s intentions to mend bilateral ties between Minsk and Warsaw are sincere....
17 December 2015
The 2015 issue of the Journal of Belarusian Studies released today is almost entirely about history. It focuses on the Belarusian-Polish-Lithuanian borderland and the period stretching from the uprising of 1863 to the inter-war period of the 20th century when the territory of today’s Belarus was split between the...
18 November 2015
In the first half of November, senior Belarusian diplomats met with their counterparts from Lithuania and France. The meetings focused on economic cooperation. However, Europe has insisted on the need for further progress in the fields of human rights and democracy in Belarus.
Trade, industrial cooperation and investments dominated the agenda of Belarusian Prime Minister Andrei Kobyakov...
31 August 2015
In July the Ministry of Trade announced a plan to levy a tax on online purchases in foreign shops. Since then the state agencies have been elaborating the methods that will be used for tax collection. It could become another tool to prevent Belarusian customers from buying abroad, both online and in the flesh.
Earning almost three times less than Poles and Lithuanians, Belarusians...
02 April 2015
Belarus Engages with the US, Improves Ties with Europe and Post-Soviet Countries – Foreign Policy Digest
Belarusian diplomacy has been shifting the country's relations with the West into high gear seeking to capitalise on Belarus' newfound importance for regional stability.
"The Europeans … are ready to cooperate with us, including for the sake of security in Europe. We say to them that we're always open to [talking]", President Lukashenka claimed while...
13 March 2015
The “Rector Selection Saga” at the European Humanities University (EHU) in Vilnius, the Belarusian university in exile, has been going on for more than half a year. It enters its third season with the Governing Board’s Rector Selection Committee making every mistake in the book - again.
It appears that the current Selection Committee (with no Belarusians on it) has no...
11 February 2015
The leaders of France, Germany, Russia and Ukraine agreed to hold peace talks in Minsk on Wednesday, 11 February, in an effort to avert a full-scale war in Ukraine.
The last German and French leaders to visit Minsk were Adolph Hitler in 1941 and Georges Pompidou in 1973. In the twenty years of Alexander Lukashenka's reign in Belarus, only two European leaders (Silvio Berlusconi and...
09 December 2014
With the economy dominated by the state and its illiberal trade laws, many Belarusians are increasingly taking to shopping abroad.
In the the middle of November, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group reported that customers from Belarus ranked fifth in the number of purchases, leaving behind the US and Canada in the online sales on Chinese anti-Valentine's Day holiday known as...
21 November 2014
On 10 November the General Prosecutor’s Office of Lithuania reported that a Vilnius court will try a Lithuanian citizen on espionage charges. The Lithuanian authorities claim that he cooperated with Belarusian security services.
As other cases from recent years prove, Belarusian intelligence is quite interested in its immediate neighbours – Poland and Lithuania. Belarusians...
20 October 2014
On 30 September, Professor Anatoli Mikhailov left his post as rector and became the president of the European Humanities University (EHU) - a Belarusian university in exile.
Rather than resigning from working for the university, Professor Mikhailov switched over to working full-time as the new president of EHU, a position created especially for him.