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Belarusian MFA and the diaspora: a complicated relationship
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Speaking at a meeting of the Consultative Council for Belarusians Living Abroad on 5 September in Minsk, Belarus's foreign minister Vladimir Makei sought support from the Belarusian diaspora in preserving the country's “independence, sovereignty and statehood”. This is a recent...
2 February 2016
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Russian Media Attack Belarus: Minsk Remains on the Kremlin Radar

Several months after the October presidential elections in Belarus, conservative and Kremlin-affiliated Russian media and commentators have again turned their attention to Belarus. They warn of an alleged rise in "Russophobia" in Belarus, and criticise the West for plotting to...

28 January 2016
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Belarus is Сhanging Rapidly and Needs the West

The ongoing conflict in Ukraine, coupled with Russia's economic decline, has facilitated the separation of Belarusian national identity from all things Russian. The government has made an effort to differentiate Belarus's interests from those of the Kremlin and to...

22 January 2016
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Census of Belarusian-Speakers, Pressure on Freelancers – Belarus Civil Society Digest

A new initiative of Mova Nanova - Census of Belarusian-speaking Population aims to demonstrate that Belarusian-speaking people exist in all sphere of life all over the country. Minsk Hub has launched a campaign promoting the facilitation of Schengen visa procedures....

13 October 2015
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Belarus, Ukraine, Russia React to Alexievich’s Nobel Prize

When Svetlana Alexievich won the 2015 Nobel Prize in literature, three countries at once tried to claim her success. Headlines across the post-Soviet space called her a “representative of the Russian literature”, a “writer born in Ukraine”, and a...

30 July 2015
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Getting Belarusian Names and Places Right

For many foreigners the Latinised spellings for Belarusian places and names continue to present real difficulties or just appear unpronounceable. Belarusians themselves feel annoyed about the ways their names are transliterated from Cyrillic into Latin script. It has become even...

21 April 2015
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Soft Belarusization: A New Shift in Lukashenka’s Domestic Policy?

Russian pro-government media outlet Lifenews has recently criticised Lukashenka's decision to not participate in the 9 May Victory Day Parade in Moscow. Many in Russia think that Minsk's integration rhetoric has been replaced with a form of soft...

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...

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...

4 February 2015
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BRSM, Lukashenka’s Press Conference – Belarus State TV Digest

Aleksandr Lukashenka attended a recent BRSM Youth Union conference and tried to convince young Belarusians to stay in the country and be loyal. Lukashenka's press conference with domestic and foreign journalists on 29 January turned into one of the biggest...

29 January 2015
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Belarusian Government Angers Russian Nationalists

Last week, Belarusian officials made an unprecedented series of statements in support of Belarusian language and culture. One after another, the President, information and education ministers and the Chairman of Constitutional Court spoke up on the issue at prominent...

28 January 2015
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Major Independent Publisher under Attack in Belarus

On 9 January the Economic Court of Minsk charged the Lohvinaŭ book store with unauthorised book sales and ordered the confiscation of its whole year’s profit. This is perhaps the largest fine ever received by civil society in Belarus. Until...

12 January 2015
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Gas Stations Switch to Belarusian, Independent Publisher Fined – Belarus Civil Society Digest

Network of gas stations switches service to Belarusian language thanks to MovaNanova. ODB publishes 2014 annual report. Belarus Research Council announces call for concept papers for policy-oriented original research. CSOs contribute to government discussion of 2030 Concept of...

14 November 2014
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MovaTUT, Social Contracting-Belarus Civil Society Digest

The most popular Belarus web portal TUT.BY launched a new initiative to promote the Belarusian language, MovaTUT. The law 'On alternative Service' adopted at the session in the House of Representatives on first reading Minsk districts introduce state social contracting....

10 November 2014
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Belarus’s Hybrid Linguistic Practice: Language as a Post-Colonial Legacy

Last week MoveHub.com released an infographic showing the second language spoken in countries across the globe. The infographic revealed many surprises, such as that Polish is the second language in the UK and that Turkish is the second...