04 December 2012
According to The Economist, Belarus occupies the fourth highest place in the world for divorce, behind South Korea, Russia and Aruba.
The Belarusian Statistics Agency has recently published fresh data on marriages and divorces in Belarus. It also suggests the growing unpopularity of traditional family lifestyles among Belarusians.
At the same time, marriages...
30 November 2012
Lately many in Belarus talk about prohibition to sell cheap poor quality alcohol and fight against alcoholisation of population in Belarus. However, sales of vodka in Belarus amount to a half of the market share.
Moreover, the government as watchdog and owner of most of distilleries in Belarus is steadily increasing production of vodka over the last years, effectively guaranteeing one...
29 November 2012
On 26 November the only independent television channel Belsat broadcasting for Belarusians cut the broadcast and sent a significant number of its employees on leave. Earlier this year Belsat broadcasted for 17 hours a day. Today it is only six and a half hours.
An independent TV channel that broadcasts from Poland to Belarus failed to raise necessary funds to...
07 November 2012
Despite being "over-policed" Belarus has one of the highest rates of crime per capita among ex-USSR countries.
This fact contradicts a famous myth about stability and order in Lukashenka regime. Belarusian system of justice and law enforcement obviously needs a serious reform, which Lukashenka publicly acknowledged. Such a reform presents quite a task for the government,...
06 November 2012
"Tell me, what is the system of getting registered at the [Polish] consulate? I went there on 10 September, it said "closed until 30/09". I think, okay, they'll open closer to the end of October, and I'll get registered... I go there – jeez! It's now closed until 31/10! I don't want to miss the next wave... What is their system of work?”, a...
02 November 2012
In some areas, Belarus is very much like the rest of Europe. Its population is rapidly ageing.
But unlike its western neighbours, Belarusians benefit from one of the lowest retirement ages in the world – 55 years old for women and 60 for men. To put it into context - in Poland the Parliament recently approved the increased the retirement age to 67 for most Poles. ...
31 October 2012
On 26 October, Belarus state television showed another criminal movie about independent Belarusian community. This time to prevent crimes Department of Financial Investigation staff members confiscated scholarly books written in Belarusian.
The authorities confiscated over 5,000 books from a former chief editor of Arche Valery Bulhakau. According to state TV-channel, these books are...
25 October 2012
On 28 October thousands of Belarusians are expected to visit Kurapaty to mark Dziady.
Dziady is a traditional day of remembrance of the deceased ancestors observed in Belarus. Kurapaty is the place on the outskirts of Minsk where the Bolshevists executed over 200,000 people in 1930s.
Dziady is more than a traditional holiday. It has also become...
10 October 2012
Official population censuses in Belarus conducted in 1989, 1999 and 2009 reveal a number of interesting trends.
They show that the population is declining, the proportion of those who identify themselves as Belarusian is increasing and the role of the Belarusian language is weakening. The period of Lukashenka's rule has coincided with the...
09 October 2012
Apostolic nuncio Claudio Gugerotti is the only diplomat who can visit the Belarusian prisoners of conscience.
The Holy See seems to work as an intermediary between the European Union and Lukashenka with regard to release of the political prisoners. The nunciature tries to keep their profile low and refuses to give details of the visits to prisons. The secrecy of those visits...
08 October 2012
Belarusian football is now experiencing extraordinary historic moments.
For the first time ever the Union of the European Football Associations (UEFA) named a club from Belarus as the best team of the week in Europe. This happened after BATE Borisov shocked all football fans and specialists by defeating the German champions Bayern Munich in the UEFA Champions League on 2...
03 October 2012
Seventy years ago, on 4 October 1942 German authorities organised Dazhynki festival in Minsk. It was the first time the festival took place in Belarus with the highest level of state support.
On 21 September 2012 Aleksandr Lukashenka was opening a Dazhynki festival in Gorki, a small town in Eastern Belarus. Dazhynki is a traditional Eastern European celebration...