10 January 2013
At the end of the last year, the Healthcare Ministry of Belarus in partnership with the UNDP started a campaign to challenge HIV/AIDS-related stereotypes and myths. An exhibition “Life with HIV is life” has been travelling to various Belarusian educational institutions to show that people can continue to live a full exciting life even after being diagnosed with HIV.
09 January 2013
Belarus assumed the presidency in the Commonwealth of the Independent States (CIS) on 1 January 2013. This is the international organisation which was intended to replace the Soviet Union in 1991.
For politicians who formed their vision in the Soviet Union, the CIS remains a substitute of the former empire, although the organisation's existence serves little practical...
08 January 2013
On 31 December 2012 Alexander Lukashenka announced that Belarus had become "a space nation". In other words, it had entered a club of countries having their own guided objects in space.
The Belarusian ruler meant the launch of the first Belarusian satellite that took place on 22 July 2012 at the Baikonur cosmodrome. But many consider the launch to be little more than a...
07 January 2013
Belarus is a unique country when it comes to Christmas: it has one Christmas at the end of December and the other one in early January. Both are official days off.
The Belarusian state officially recognises two confessions - the Orthodox and Roman Catholic Churches - as the most legitimate and important. Orthodox believers celebrate Christmas on 7 January by the Julian calendar,...
04 January 2013
Observers of Belarusian politics have lately noticed increased activism of a political party that is traditionally labelled as pro-governmental. The leader of the Liberal Democratic Party Siarhey Haidukevich and his son and also deputy Aleh Haidukevich have recently featured a lot in the media. For many this again raised the question about the role and status of pro-governmental parties in the...
01 January 2013
Topics ranging from Belarus travel topics for foreigners to economic sanctions and the Orthodox Church in Belarus drew the attention of Belarus Digest readers in 2012. Here are our top 10 most popular stories.
31 December 2012
The outgoing year of 2012 has left a contradictory record in the modern history of Belarus.
It has seen numerous events that came as a real shock for Belarusians and foreign observers - primarily in the economy and politics. At the same time, 2012 gave the nation several moments of pride and satisfaction. However, with the exception of sport victories abroad, positive events of the year...
29 December 2012
With the New Year celebration just around the corner, it is time to think about the list of top civic actions in 2012. As a disclaimer, the goal of the list is to highlight achievement and recap success, often overlooked in the repressive environment.
Event of the Year: Educators and Researchers
We could not choose between significant events...
28 December 2012
Belarus started the year 2012 in a rather bad shape.
Alexander Lukashenka has been occupying his post for almost 18 years. A dozen political prisoners remained behind the bars. Relations with the West were worse than ever before. The opposition was suppressed and the economy went through a painful recovery from the economic crisis of 2011. That year the inflation reached 108% and the...
27 December 2012
The currency crisis of 2011 has revealed the limits of the Belarusian economic model. On the one hand, it became obvious even to the most conservative government officials that changes in economic policy are required.
On the other hand, the resurgence of oil exports in the first half of 2012 allowed the government to avoid necessary reforms. The economy finishes this year with a low...