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Next presidential elections, the diagnosis of the Belarusian economy- Digest of Belarusian Analytics
Lukashenka Yermoshina
TUT.by predicts that six candidates from the opposition will run for the Belarusian presidential elections in 2020. Lukashenka’s alliance with China helps to avoid binary confrontation with Russia and the European Union. Russian media have increased blaming Belarus for infidelity amid the introduction of the 30-day visa-free period. World Bank names three chronic diseases of the […]
30 August 2018
BISS Belarus
Belarusian independent think tanks: surviving despite the odds

Although people rightly regard the Belarusian political regime as authoritarian, several independent think tanks function in the country. In this article, Belarus Digest identifies some of the main players, drawing on data from the Belarus Policy database and a ranking prepared by the Belarusian Research Council in 2016. Belarusian independent think tanks mostly specialise in economics, international […]

16 August 2018
Belarus human rights
Crackdown on media, online casinos and IT squad – Belarus civil society digest

Belarusian authorities initiated a new wave of journalists’ detentions. Blogger detained in Hrodna for cooperation with Belsat TV. TBM called to list Belarusian as native language during the upcoming census. Expert communities released Belarusian Yearbook 2018. Project on monitoring of small rivers and lakes started in Polesse. Minsk held Alternative Energy Market environmental forum. Brest […]

13 August 2018
Domracheva Bjorndalen
Belarus-Norway: Informal partnership through family ties

On 27 July biathlon legends Darya Domracheva and Ole Einar Bjørndalen test-drove the world’s biggest dump truck. Visiting BelAZ enterprise, the Belarusian manufacturer of haulage and earthmoving equipment, they took the company’s monster truck for a spin. The famous Belarusian-Norwegian biathlon couple has broken the ice in the complicated relations between the two states. They […]

6 August 2018
Alexander Lukashenka
Visa-free stay increases, cooperation with China intensifies, and Slavianski Bazaar – Belarus State Press Digest

Belarus increases the term of visa-free stay of foreign citizens to 30 days. Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makei meets Latvian Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs to discuss the expected visit of Alexander Lukashenka to Latvia. Belarus boosts economic cooperation with China and continues petty trade disputes with Russia. Meanwhile, the Russian ambassador to Belarus praises economic cooperation […]

26 July 2018
Jolan Viaud Belarus prison
Foreign experience of Belarusian judiciary: shock and hunger strikes

On 28 June, Alan Paul Smith, a British citizen incarcerated in Belarus for assisting illegal immigration, stopped his hunger strike after a visit from a British embassy worker. According to Mr Smith’s wife, he initiated the hunger strike to draw attention to violations of his prisoner’s rights in Belarus. In fact, poor treatment and disproportionate […]

19 July 2018
Alexander Lukashenka Vladimir Putin
LPG export growth and a war on network fakes – Digest of Belarusian Analytics

Belarus turns into a huge exporter of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) to neighbouring Ukraine and Poland. Belarus’ economic authorities have managed to obtain a credit for business confidence. The prosecutor’s office intensively detects violations in the Belarusian army. Belarusian authorities declare a war on network fakes. Minsk Dialogue Forum becomes the first attempt to identify the […]

16 July 2018
Belarus festival
Protest theatre, not-for-women jobs, and Kurapaty defense – Belarus civil society digest

Good Neighbour festival gathered around 120 grassroots leaders in Minsk. Urban festival Kartonka held in Vitebsk for the first time at a local printing plant. Petitions.by team starts a tour over Belarus to change the regions for the better. Civil society involves the business and the media community in the discussion of the restaurant near Kurapaty […]

9 July 2018
Belarusian Independence Day: tanks and “carnivals”

On 3 July Belarus celebrated its official Independence Day. Many Belarusians felt frustrated despite a military parade and festivities to celebrate the achievements of the national economy. While Alexander Lukashenka branded the parade as “the best” in Belarus’s history, Minsk residents complained of traffic jams and damage to public roads. In both Minsk and other centres, local […]

2 July 2018
Kurapaty restaurant divides business, state and civil society activists

Since 31 May protesters have blocked the entrance to a recently opened restaurant outside Minsk. Built in Kurapaty, 50 metres from a memorial to victims of Stalin’s repressions during 1937-1940, the ‘Poedem, Poedim’ restaurant has caused heated debates. Conflict quickly erupted between business interests and the values of certain sections of civil society, while the […]

13 June 2018
Belarus’s balancing between NATO and Russia: Squaring the circle?

Speaking in Brussels on 1 June, Belarusian foreign minister Uladzimir Makei warned that a proposed US military base in Poland would trigger a response in the region. Moreover, if tensions grow as a result, the Belarusian government could soon play host to a Russian military base. On the same day, while visiting border guards in […]

5 June 2018
Maradona’s ‘hand of God’ touches Belarusian football

On 15 May Diego Maradona, legendary football player and World Champion in 1986, signed a three-year contract with the Belarusian club Dynama Brest. Back in 2016 the club announced that the United Arab Emirates-based company Sohra Overseas had become the team’s main sponsor, making Dynama Brest one of the few private football clubs in Belarus. With […]

22 May 2018
Low-costs flights in Belarus: wishful thinking?

Last month, in a speech to the Belarusian parliament, Alexander Lukashenka expressed dissatisfaction with Belarusian airlines. The president questioned the absence of low-cost flights in Belarus and Belarusians’ extensive use of Vilnius, Warsaw and Kiev airports. This issue – discussed by Belarusians for several years – has been problematised by Lukashenka for the first time. […]

10 May 2018
Bike Carnival, pressure on journalists, civil protests – Belarus civil society digest

Zrobim! environmental campaign opens its sixth season. Bike Carnival will be held in Minsk on May 12. Death penalty discussion resumes. Organizers of the annual Chernobyl Path rally start a local fundraising campaign. Amendments to media law pass first reading in the parliament: BAJ suggestions not considered so far. BAJ monitoring report: in 2017, the […]

4 May 2018
Animal cruelty in Belarus

In March 2018 several Belarusian media reported the shocking treatment of homeless animals in Babruisk. Staff members at the animal shelter, which has been nicknamed the “death camp”, allegedly applied the euthanasia drug T61 on unsedated animals, causing immense suffering to thousands of cats and dogs. The volunteers from a Babruisk-based animal protection society, “Goodness”, […]