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Igar Gubarevich
Igar Gubarevich
Igar Gubarevich is a senior analyst of the Ostrogorski Centre based in Minsk. He grew up in Bielaaziorsk in Brest region and graduated with honours from the Minsk State Institute of Foreign Languages. In 1993 – 2006, Igar worked in various diplomatic positions at the Belarusian Foreign Ministry, including postings in New York and Paris.
8 October 2015
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Building Ties with Europe, Setting Priorities in the UN – Belarus Foreign Policy Digest

Belarus has been pursuing its strategy of normalising relations with Europe. In Minsk and European capitals, diplomats focused on strengthening trade and investment cooperation. In New York, foreign minister Vladimir Makei sought to foster further political normalisation, which many...

5 October 2015
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Lukashenka Defends Futile Causes, Showcases Young Son at the UN

Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenka went to New York on 26–29 September to attend the world leaders' meetings at the United Nations. The country’s servile state-run media stubbornly called his trip a “working visit to the United States”. Meanwhile, the sojourn...

16 September 2015
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New Agreement with EU, Reviving Embassies with the US – Belarus Foreign Policy Digest

Encouraged by "non-negative dynamics" in Belarus, the European Union is drafting a new kind of framework agreement with Minsk. It will take into account the realities of their relationship. In the meantime, Minsk and Washington are discussing the practicalities...

21 August 2015
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Belarus Engages Ukraine, Moldova, Improves Ties with EU and US – Foreign Policy Digest

The summer holidays proved to be productive for the relations of Belarus with both "old" and "new" Europe. Foreign minister Vladimir Makei ended a continued pause in high-level contacts with Belarus' southern neighbour by an unconventional five-day long visit to...

18 August 2015
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Belarus and Russian Food Embargo: a Success Story?

Belarus became the primary beneficiary of the food embargo, which Russia imposed against Western nations in August 2014. In January – May 2015, Belarus supplied 916.4 thousand tons of embargoed products to Russia, a 53.5% increase over the same...

28 July 2015
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Belarus Discovers Its Eurasian Side

In July, Belarus launched a diplomatic offensive to build ties with regional superpowers like China, India and Brazil seeking to counterbalance the much-publicised overtures its has been making to the West. The BRICS summit in Ufa, Russia, provided Lukashenka with...

13 July 2015
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Intensive Dialogue with Europe, South Asian and African Overtures – Belarus Foreign Policy Digest

Belarus has been making a desperate attempt to introduce its goods to new markets, hoping to compensate for declining exports to many of their traditional destinations, especially Russia. Over the past few weeks, Belarusian diplomats have concentrated their trade promotion...

29 May 2015
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Both an EU Partner and Russia’s Satellite? – Belarus Foreign Policy Digest

Two of the main events in Belarus' diplomatic life in May were China's presidents visit to Minsk and Belarus' participation in the Eastern Partnership summit – both of which have fitted well into Minsk' foreign policy priorities. These priorities include...

20 April 2015
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Multi-Vector Diplomacy with Trade in Focus – Belarus Foreign Policy Digest

In the first weeks of April, Belarus focused on expanding its ties with Asia, the Middle East and Europe. Johannes Hahn, the EU "Neighbourhood" Commissioner has become one more senior EU official to visit Belarus in recent months. The last...

2 April 2015
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Belarus Engages with the US, Improves Ties with Europe and Post-Soviet Countries – Foreign Policy Digest

Belarusian diplomacy has been shifting the country's relations with the West into high gear seeking to capitalise on Belarus' newfound importance for regional stability. "The Europeans … are ready to cooperate with us, including for the sake of security in...

23 March 2015
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Minsk Dialogue Conference: Belarus to Become a Regional Hub for Expert Diplomacy

Minsk has recently reaffirmed its status as a regional diplomacy hub. Western governments have been eager to praise Belarus' role in the Ukraine peace process and became receptive to the Belarusian regime's ideas on reformatting the Eastern Partnership initiative. This...

18 March 2015
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Holy See: Belarus is a Model for Our World

Cardinal Pietro Parolin, second in line in the Vatican hierarchy to Pope Francis, called an internationally ostracised Belarus a "model for our world". Visiting Minsk on 12-15 March, he also denounced the West's policy of isolation and promised to provide...

11 March 2015
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Russia Pushes For Single Visa Space, Belarus Resists

Russia is getting serious about the idea of creating a unified visa space with Belarus. On 3 March, Moscow brought in big guns when Vladimir Putin announced upcoming talks on an agreement providing for the mutual recognition of each country's...

6 March 2015
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Belarus Foreign Ministry Toys With The Belarusian Language

Belarus' President Alexander Lukashenka said in 1994 that the Belarusian language was a poor one, unfit for expressing anything grand. His senior diplomats appear to be proving him wrong. On 19 February, Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei publicly recited 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...