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Will Russia Provide More Loans to Lukashenka?
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The Eurasian Economic Community (EurAsEC), a post-Soviet economic bloc led by Russia, agreed in May to extend a loan of USD 3 billion. According to the agreement, Belarus will receive the following funds: USD 1.24 billion in 2011, USD...
29 June 2011
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Digest of Belarusian Analytics: the New Architecture of Street Protests

Belarus Digest begins publishing summaries of the most notable studies prepared by Belarusian scholars and institutions. Digest of Belarusian Analytics will cover the most interesting publications, which are often not available in English. Devaluation. What's next? Yuri Pshennik, analyzing...

28 June 2011
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The Greek Syndrome of Belarus Statistics

At the beginning of the current financial crisis in Greece, the European authorities found that Greek official statistics were inaccurate and falsified. The Greeks been reluctant to show the real figures to fog their non-fulfillment of the ”Maastricht Criteria”,...

27 June 2011
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Five Most Absurd Solutions to Combat Crisis in Belarus

Reading Belarusian news these days feels like opening a German newspaper on April fool’s Day. Some of the news just cannot be true - they must be jokes.  But, up to now, not a single of that news has...

26 June 2011
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Politics & Civil Society Digest: 9-24 June 2011

Belarus Digest starts to publish regular summaries of the most notable political and civil society news in Belarus. The new digests will attempt to give a richer picture of the recent events in Belarus, and will often go beyond...

24 June 2011
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The Sound of Clapping

Two weeks ago, some people came out into the Minsk city centre on a peaceful protest. A week ago, over a hundred turned up. Yesterday, there were a thousand protesters in Minsk, and also across cities and towns of...

22 June 2011
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EU-Belarus: Between Conditionality and Constructive Engagement

The Council of the EU decision on Belarus of 20 June 2011 introduced a new development into EU-Belarus relations. Apart from designating additional persons to an already impressive list of those subject to travel restrictions and assets freeze, it...

21 June 2011
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Europe’s Economic Sanctions as a Symbolic Gesture

This week the European Union introduced economic sanctions against three Belarusian companies supposedly linked to Alyaksandr Lukashenka. The European Union also imposed an embargo on Belarus on arms and on materials that might be used for internal repression. It...

21 June 2011
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Chernobyl-Style Economic Policy of Belarus

The reaction of Belarus' President resembles the Soviet Union’s approach to the Chernobyl accident. At his press conference last Friday he repeated the old mantra: “No crash happened, we have everything under control, do not listen to foreign propaganda,...

15 June 2011
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Oiling the Unrest in Belarus

  Two months ago Alyaksandr Lukashenka ordered to find more oil deposits in Belarus. He was visibly upset that his country did not have enough of its own oil and had to depend on Russia. After all, oil revenues...

10 June 2011
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Loan from the IMF or Privatization by the Russians?

Belarus' economy needs external financing more then ever before. The government resists privatization but it will have to surrender soon, even if the International Monetary Fund decides to extend another loan.  Recently the Belarusian weekly Belorusski Rynok discussed the chances...

8 June 2011
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Automobile Rebellion in Belarus?

Yesterday, several hundred car drivers participated in a mass protest action called “Stop Gasoline” against the rising fuel prices in the Belarusian cities of Minsk, Homel, Brest and Mogilev. Following the call of the automobilist organization “Za-Avto”, drivers

7 June 2011
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What Can Belarus Sell?

Russia, through the Eurasian Economic Community, has agreed to grant Belarus a USD 3bn loan, of which Belarus will only see USD 800m this month. The Belarusian government will only get the remaining amount, in two portions over...

7 June 2011
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A Click Away from the KGB: Internet Revolution in Belarus?

Can the Internet facilitate political mobilization? The so-called Twitter and Facebook revolutions in Moldova, Iran, Tunisia, and Egypt suggest that it can.  Whatever its limits, technology enables people to express their discontent safer and louder, to gather larger protests,...

5 June 2011
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Russia Saved Lukashenka Yet Again

The weekend brought a pleasant surprise for the Belarusian leadership. It managed to get a big loan from the Eurasian Economic Community – a post-Soviet integration bloc dominated by Russia. This week, Lukashenka will be given...