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Why is the West afraid of the West-2017 exercises?
On 21 July 2017, Alexander Lukashenka visited Kyiv and met with Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko. After the meeting, Poroshenko stated that he had received guarantees of security and that Ukraine would never be threatened from Belarusian territory. However, the...
14 July 2017
Belarusian army aims to protect Russian airspace, not to atack other countries

Belarus's neighbours regularly voice their concerns about Minsk's role in a potential Russian invasion of the Baltic states or Ukraine. However, on 15 June, Belarusian president Alexander Lukashenka insisted that although Belarusian and Russian troops were operating in...

13 February 2017
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Belarus at the centre of Russia-NATO wargame simulation

On 23 – 26 January 2017 a Baltic security wargaming simulation took place in Warsaw. Two defence and security think tanks, the Potomac Foundation and the Casimir Pulaski Foundation, hosted the event. The wargaming initiative focused on the scenario of...

10 November 2016
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What does a New Cold War mean for Belarus?

Last week's visit by the Russian Minister of Defence clearly demonstrated the Kremlin’s intentions to undermine the image of Belarus as a country with a predictable and neutral military and foreign policy. The confrontation between NATO and Russia, as a...

25 May 2016
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Freedom of Press, Lennart Meri Conference, Defence Industry – Ostrogorski Centre Digest

Over the last few weeks analysts of the Ostrogorski Centre focused on the treatment of the Chernobyl issue in Belarus' foreign and domestic policies, as 26 April marked the 30th anniversary of the disaster. They discussed the recent Freedom House...

13 April 2016
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Losses from Sanctions War, Liability for Extremism, Geely Cars – State Press Digest

The Belarusian authorities are trying to debunk Russian accusations that it is making increasingly nationalist policies. The authorities are tightening legislation on extremism by introducing criminal liability for extremism and fighting in foreign conflicts. The president has ordered all officials...

3 February 2016
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Thawing Relations with the West, Market Traders Protest New Imports Rules – Western Press Digest

Western media focuses on the lifting of sanctions on Belarus by the West, Belarus’s rejection of plans for a Russian air base and heralds the thawing of relations with the West. Observers seem to agree that the temporary sanctions suspension...

28 December 2015
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EU to Double Assistance to Belarus – Belarus Foreign Policy Digest

Belarus’ relations with Europe have found a new lease of life after the suspension of the EU sanctions against Minsk. The EU’s intends to double its financial assistance to Belarus in 2016. The removal of sanctions allowed Belarus’ foreign minister...

7 December 2015
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New Military Doctrine in Belarus

On 15 November, Belarusian Defence Minister Andrej Raŭkoŭ appeared on Belarusian Television to discuss a new military doctrine, which he attributed to the arms buildup in neighbouring NATO states surrounding Belarus. This article explores the background and content — insofar...

9 September 2015
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Opinion: Russia’s Troublesome Ally

Belarus’ strained relationship with Russia illustrates the contradictory relationship between its leadership and that in Moscow during the presidential election campaign. The problematic areas include the war in Ukraine and the closely related issue of collaboration in the military-industrial complex. In...

19 March 2015
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Army Reform, New Gyroplanes and Radar Systems – Belarus Security Digest

Belarus' law enforcement agencies still do not know how much money they receive in 2015, while all remains quiet on the Belarusian border. Less than they would like but better than nothing – the Belarusian Air...

5 February 2015
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Is Lukashenka Preparing for a War?

At the end of January, Belarus temporally mobilised nearly 15,000 reservists - a large number for the nearly 50,000-strong national army. A major Russian news portal Gazeta.ru linked this move to the escalation of the Ukrainian conflict. At the same...

15 December 2014
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New Weapons from China, Taking Offence at NATO, Afghanistan Border – Belarus Security Digest

China regards Belarus as a promising market for its armaments. Attempts to establish cooperation between NATO and CSTO have failed. The situation in Afghanistan keeps special services and border guards from CIS countries on their toes: an escalation of the...

21 November 2014
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Belarusian Espionage: Abroad and at Home

On 10 November the General Prosecutor’s Office of Lithuania reported that a Vilnius court will try a Lithuanian citizen on espionage charges. The Lithuanian authorities claim that he cooperated with Belarusian security services. As other cases from recent years prove,...

27 October 2014
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The Russian Air Force Base in Belarus: Getting the Facts Straight

Last week Chief of the Russian Air Force Viktor Bondarev announced that a Russian airbase would be established in Babruysk in 2016. An article from the Moscow Times on expanding the Russian air force presence abroad, subsequently reprinted in...