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1939 in Belarus: National Reunification or Soviet Occupation of Eastern Poland?
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On 16 September local authorities closed an exhibition entitled “West Belarusian Atlantis” in Zaslauye near Minsk. The author of the project, Ihar Melnikau, dedicated the exhibition to Belarusians in the Polish army in the 1939 Polish-German campaign and to...
29 September 2014
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The Mova Cup, Embroidery Day, Hotline Green Phone – Belarus Civil Society Digest

Mova Cup took promoted the use of the Belarusian language trying oneself in various sports. The Embroidery Day will celebrate the Belarusian national dress. All-Belarusian Congress for Independence scheduled for December. The European Humanities University welcomes new students. A special hotline...

26 September 2014
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Belarus Smuggles EU Food to Russia Despite Sanctions

On 19 September Russian Agricultural Control announced that Russia can restrict the imports of fish and dairy from a number of Belarusian companies. These companies allegedly violate the sanctions regime by re-exporting EU products under fake labels. Since the very...

25 September 2014
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Outlook for Inflation Improves, Reserves and Income Grow – Belarus Economy Digest

Price increases for regulated goods and services, as well as the abolition of price regulations on meat had a stimulating effect on inflation in Belarus. In the first half of 2014 a gradual reduction of Belarus' foreign currency reserves occurred...

24 September 2014
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Securing Borders, Rediscovering Africa, Restoring Ties With The West – Belarus Foreign Policy Digest

On 21 September the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon welcomed the important and constructive role played by Minsk in diplomatic efforts to resolve the Ukrainian crisis at his meeting in New York with Belarusian Prime Minister Mikhail Myasnikovich....

23 September 2014
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Why Is the Eastern Partnership Dead? Map of Reforms, Talaka, Greenmap – Belarus Civil Sociey Digest

Foreign policy of the European Union in Eastern Europe and the possible future of the Eastern Partnership were debated in Minsk this week. Belarusian Institute for Strategic Studies (BISS) under the REFORUM project announces a call for national experts to...

22 September 2014
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A Thaw in US-Belarus Relations?

The Ukraine crisis has revitalised, if not improved, US-Belarus relations. Due to his careful stance on the Ukrainian conflict as well as Vladimir Putin’s careless actions in the Crimea, Alexandr Lukashenka is no longer the main villain on the post-Communist...

19 September 2014
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What Life is Like in Belarus’ Small Towns

Few people in the West know that provincial Salihorsk, not Minsk, is the wealthiest town in Belarus. Belaruskali, responsible for around 10% of Belarusian exports annually, makes Salihorsk the most economically important town in Belarus, outside of Minsk. Despite its wealth,...

18 September 2014
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Fencing Off the War in Ukraine: Belarus Strengthens Its Borders

On 4 September, Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka signed a decree establishing security zones alongside the border with Russia. The measure targets illegal migration, drug trafficking, as well as the illicit movement of goods across the border. Until now, the Belarus-Russia...

17 September 2014
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Belarus And Poland: Brought Together By Russian Sanctions?

On 28-29 August the head of Belarusian diplomacy, Uladzimir Makiej, met with the top Polish officials in Warsaw. The war in Ukraine and Russia’s self-imposed isolation can bring Belarusand Poland closer together. Following the Russian ban on food from EU countries,...

15 September 2014
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Russia Still Seeks an Airbase, Financial Constraints, Balancing on Ukraine – Belarus Security Digest

Belarus is running out of money as only priority expenditures receive budget financing. Security forces will get a raise in their wages. However, this bump will simply compensate for inflation. Russia still wants to get an air force base in...

12 September 2014
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Belarus Hopes That Ukraine’s Refugees Will Rescue Its Agriculture

On 9 September chief of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees mission in Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova Oldrich Andrysek reported that Belarus accepted more than 25,000 Ukrainian citizens over the last two months. In 2013, only 2,200 Ukrainians made their way...

11 September 2014
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An Insider’s Guide to Minsk: Beyond Mainstream Sightseeing

Minsk attracts more and more foreign visitors. Tourism clearly develops. The Ice Hockey World Championship in May of 2014 marked a big mile stone here. It brought numerous first time guests to Minsk. Many guides provide a standard list...

10 September 2014
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No Longer the Last Dictatorship in Europe

The Kremlin’s war in Ukraine and the rise of Russian authoritarianism have made it clear that Belarus is neither the only dictatorship in Europe, nor the worst of them. While Lukashenka's authoritarianism causes problems primarily for Belarusians, Putin is now...

9 September 2014
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Belarusian Shrimp, Lukashenka’s Ice Bucket Challenge and Women Veterans – Western Press Digest

The Belarusian authorities did not take kindly to a Belarusian schoolboy calling on President Lukashenka to take the Ice Bucket Challenge. A mysterious new type of shrimp from Belarus is turning up in Russian supermarkets and a Belarusian citizen...