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Mahiloŭ Region – the Homeland of Lukashenka
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On 6 July Aliaksandr Lukashenka visited a celebration in his village of origin Aleksandryja in Mahilioŭ region. There he admitted that he very much looked forward to visiting his native land during his pressing schedule. “I travelled around the...
5 July 2013
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Mens Club, Strikes, Illegal Polls – Belarus Civil Society Digest

Strikes of entrepreneurs in Belarus dominated the public opinion over the last days. How the authorities reacted to the protests?Budzma`s ADNAK attracted a large crowd with its innovative award ceremony.  The Council of Europe together with Belarusian authorities organised a round table on death penalty. Treci Sektar, a Belarusian NGO,...

28 June 2013
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Svetlana Alexievich: Belarusian Language is Rural and Literary Unripe

Last week, the Board of Trustees of the Peace Prize of German Publishers and Booksellers Association have chosen the Belarusian writer Svetlana Alexievich as the recipient of this year’s Peace Prize. In a subsequent interview with the German daily Frankfurter...

8 May 2013
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People of the Swamps Fight the Flooding

This April, the region of Paliessie in southern Belarus experienced annual flood caused by major local rivers. The flood was the largest in decades. Yet Paliessie is famous not only for floods that turn towns and villages into islands. The...

5 March 2013
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Is There Nationalism in Belarus?

Appointing three new university rectors on 28 February, Alexander Lukashenka once again stated that there exists no problem with the Belarusian language at universities. Meanwhile, only 0.2 per cent of university students study in the Belarusian language, according to a recent...

4 March 2013
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No Single Opposition Candidate for Presidential Elections?-Belarus Civil Society Digest

Who constitutes a 'new majority'? What is the 'Civil Agreement on Change' about? - campaign Tell the Truth! presented its strategy for the next local and presidential elections.  The civil society organised numerous educational opportunities and events for Belarusians. Among...

18 February 2013
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Radioactive Mushrooms, Civil Magistrate, Mova ci Kava – Digest of Belarusian Civil Society

Belarusian civil society organised a number of discussion events on topics ranging from cancer to media wars. Other initiatives included the promotion of the Belarusian language and examining radioactive mushrooms.  The Liberal Club attracted 100 practitioners to its event on...

30 January 2013
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Clash of Civilizations: Latin v Cyrillic Scripts in Belarus

In November 2012, the newly published Minsk underground system map surprised Minsk residents. On these maps, Belarusian names of the stations were transliterated into Belarusian using Latin script, or Lacinka. This transliteration seemed incomprehensible to many people and caused a...

7 January 2013
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Two Christmases in One Country

Belarus is a unique country when it comes to Christmas: it has one Christmas at the end of December and the other one in early January. Both are official days off. The Belarusian state officially recognises two confessions - the...

26 December 2012
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Bilinguism in Belarus: Civil Society v the State

The Belarusian authorities trade the national identity of Belarusians in exchange for economic subsidies from Russia. Constitutional guarantees of equal rights of the two official languages actually do not work. The majority of Belarusians react indifferently to that fact, as...

22 October 2012
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Language of Democracy and Language of Dictatorship – Digest of Belarusian Analytics

Belarusian analysts discuss the role of language in Belarusian society, media barometer, abolition of death penalty, European and Eurasion integration among other topics.  Language of Democracy and Language of Dictatorship – brief but probably the most popular article of the week...

12 October 2012
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Belarusian Academics Sacked for Writing Books and Fairy Tales

In Belarus, being an academic means that you work in an institution controlled by the state. Sometimes you cannot be a true scholar because you have to produce the "official truth". Otherwise you risk being repressed for disloyalty. A good...

10 October 2012
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Belarus Censuses: Population Declines, National Identity Strengthens

Official population censuses in Belarus conducted in 1989, 1999 and 2009 reveal a number of interesting trends. They show that the population is declining, the proportion of those who identify themselves as Belarusian is increasing and the role of the Belarusian language is weakening. The period of Lukashenka's...

25 August 2012
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Belarusians in Poland: Living Together but Separately

On 12 August Polish hooligans attacked Belarusian journalists and activists in Warsaw. Although such incidents are rare, old stereotypes and prejudices often make life for Belarusians in Poland difficult. Such stereotypes also provoke anti-Belarusian acts of vandalism. Although Poland guarantees...

15 May 2012
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AD.NAK, ‘Tell the Truth’, Social Contracting – Belarus Civil Society Digest

The most important civil society events in Belarus included the festival of Belarusian-language advertising, a civic campaign of Tell the Truth and arrests of its leaders as well as a number of training courses organised for civil society in...