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Belarusians in World Values Survey: East or West?
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In February 2015 following the negotiations in Minsk the President of Belarus said he was not planning to “turn to the West.” He explained, “You and I are Russian people... we have shared history. We have shared opinions.” According to...
26 February 2015
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The New Economics without Oil – Belarus Economy Digest

Belarus is reeling from the effects of the wobbling oil price and Western-imposed sanctions on Russia. The economy is now paying for the absence of liberal reforms through a decrease in manufacturing, the depreciation of the national currency and the...

25 February 2015
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A ‘Nice Dialogue’ with Europe, Befriending Middle East Hardliners – Belarus Foreign Policy Digest

Shortly after welcoming French and German leaders to Minsk, Alexander Lukashenka received EU emissaries from Riga and Brussels. He reassured Latvian foreign minister Edgars Rinkēvičs of Belarus' interest in getting closer to Europe, primarily due to its technologies and...

24 February 2015
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Belarusians Guard their Borders – Belarus Photo Digest

On 23 February Belarus and other post-Soviet countries celebrated the Day of Defenders of the Fatherland and the Day of Armed Forces. A minute of silence commemorates those who died defending their country. Siarhej Leskiec visited the defenders of Belarus’s...

23 February 2015
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Belarusian Authorities Crack Down on Football Fans

In recent months the Belarusian police have intensified pressure on young football fans – followers of the 'ultra' subculture. In January police detained at least 69 young ultras. In Salihorsk in late January 20 fans of a local team were detained for...

19 February 2015
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Dealing with Slavery and Human Trafficking in Belarus

On 6 February a Belarusian businessman received 5 years in prison for enslaving a group of Vietnamese whom he had earlier agreed to deliver to the European Union. Meanwhile, the Belarusian government has defined fighting human trafficking as one...

18 February 2015
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Russia is Trying to Control CSTO Countries, Mobilisation – Belarus Security Digest

Fears that a call for mobilisation was on the horizon sent the public into a panic in Belarus, though the concerns were largely unfounded. The Belarusian military and industrial complex is planning for the future and hopes on orders from...

17 February 2015
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Insulated from Competition, Belavia Profits and Modernizes

Whilst 2014 was a bad year for the Belarusian economy on the whole, it brought in plenty of profit for Belavia, Belarusian Airlines and Minsk National Airport. Without any competition from low-cost airlines, Belavia has been able to safely modernise its...

16 February 2015
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Belarus Approaches the EU Through ‘Old Europe’

Just before German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President François Hollande came for negotiations on Ukraine to Minsk, Belarusian Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makei visited Germany. The foreign minister's trip on 5-8 February was just one of numerous steps that...

13 February 2015
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Green Men, Western Assistance, 5 Years of Belarusian Web – Digest of Belarusian Analytics

EU foreign policy towards Belarus, who pays for journalism, the new martial law and Western assistance to Belarus are among the topics which kept Belarusian analysts busy recently.  Foreign Policy Rethinking the EU Policies Towards Belarus – Andrei Liakhovich, the Director of the Centre...

12 February 2015
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Dranikfest, Superheroes in Minsk, Human Rights – Belarus Civil Society Digest

European Perspective launches a map of public hearings in 2015 to strengthen the participation of Belarusians in public affairs. Perspektiva holds an Entrepreneurs Forum. Astravets becomes the 9th city reached by Mova Nanova language courses. Creative community from Brest launches...

11 February 2015
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Belarus Welcomes Top EU Leaders: A Rare Show

The leaders of France, Germany, Russia and Ukraine agreed to hold peace talks in Minsk on Wednesday, 11 February, in an effort to avert a full-scale war in Ukraine. The last German and French leaders to visit Minsk were Adolph...

10 February 2015
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Belarus Wants Foreign Catholic Priests Out

At the end of January, senior Belarusian officials made statements that threatened to undermine Belarus' good relations with the Vatican, severing ties that the country had worked for years to establish. Aliaksandr Lukashenka and the Commissioner for Religions spoke out...

9 February 2015
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Talking to Europe, Mending Ties with the Vatican, Family Values – Belarus Foreign Policy Digest

During his "open dialogue" with the press on 29 January, President Alexander Lukashenka continued walking the fine line between alarming Russia and progressing Belarus' relations with the West. The Belarusian ruler made it clear that he appreciated the noticeable shift...

6 February 2015
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Visa Liberalisation, Saving the Economy and Readying Defenses – Western Press Digest

Relations between Russia and Belarus appear to have taken a turn for the worse as the new year begins. As Belarus's economy stumbles, Minsk tries to shore up the Belarusian ruble while simultaneously blaming Moscow for some of its...