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EU Support, Modernisation and Russia’s Interests – Digest of Belarusian Analytics
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Belarusians have become less interested in the pro-European vector of development as the influence of Russia in the country grows. Belarusian analysts hope that Stefen Fulle's European Dialogue on Modernisation with Belarus will soon become meaningful and that the...
25 April 2012
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A Test of Opportunity for Ukraine and Belarus: Elections in 2012

The two largest states on the EU’s eastern borders, Ukraine and Belarus, will be holding parliamentary elections this autumn. They are being held at a particularly low point in relations with the EU. Few are optimistic about the outcome. Nonetheless,...

24 April 2012
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Changes in Belarus: The Task for the Opposition, not Foreign Powers

The recent release of two opposition activists is an important event but hardly a turning point for the political situation in Belarus. More than a dozen political prisoners remain incarcerated. Even if Alexandr Lukashenka frees all political prisoners and...

15 April 2012
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Political Prisoners in Belarus: How to Break the Vicious Circle

Former Belarusian presidential candidate Andrei Sannikov and his main campaign aide Dzmitry Bandarenka have been released from prison on the eve of the Christian Orthodox Easter. It looks like the first step in the de-escalation of the worst EU-Belarus...

15 April 2012
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Sannikov Released, Kavalenka Stops Hunger Strike – Politics and Civil Society Digest

Yesterday Andrei Sannikov, a 2010 presidential candidate, was released after almost sixteen months in prison.  Belarusian authorities prepare for the next warming up cycle in their relations with the West where political prisoners, Western pressure and Russian subsidies (or absence thereof)...

9 April 2012
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How Can Belarusian Authorities Retaliate Against the EU Sanctions?

Last month for the first time ever, the EU introduced sanctions against a number of companies, which supply oil refinery products to EU countries. It means that there is still a possibility of expansion of painful economic sanctions against Lukashenka's regime. There is no...

8 April 2012
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Russia and the Travel Ban, EU Ambassadors Return, Political Prisoners – Politics and Civil Society Digest

​While Moscow has confirmed that those on the Belarus authorities' exit ban list will be unable to leave Russia either, official Minsk started to show willingness to release prisoners. It was also hinted that Belarusian Ambassadors to Brussels and...

30 March 2012
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Freedom Day, Arbitrary Detentions and Travel Bans – Belarus Politics Digest

Although Belarusian authorities permitted and did not interfere with the annual Freedom Day opposition rally in the centre of Minsk, the pressure against opposition activists is increasing. Multiple detentions leading to short-term prison terms are now coupled with restrictions on travelling...

21 March 2012
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Diplomatic Scandal and Why Political Prisoners Are Not Released – Digest of Belarusian Analytics

Diplomatic scandal with the European Union, political prisoners and economic sanctions remain in the focus of attention of Belarusian analysts. Other topics include the effect of Putin's election as president in Russia, the state of the legal profession in...

6 March 2012
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EU-Belarus Relations: Playing Hardball

EU travel ban against 21 Belarusian officials provoked extravagant behaviour by Belarusian authorities which analysts are still struggling to explain. On 28 February Belarus asked the Polish and EU delegation ambassadors to leave the country. The EU response was...

22 February 2012
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Belarusian Election As An Opportunity For Change

The September 2012 Parliamentary elections offer a chance for the opposition to reconnect with the wider Belarusian population rather than retain the current status quo. Even though some economic pressure on the regime has been lifted by the...

20 February 2012
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Political Prisoners as Part of Belarus Electoral Process

Belarusian opposition activist Siarhei Kavalenka may soon die as a result of a 59-day hunger strike against his criminal prosecution. He and other 14 opposition and civil society activists remain in prisons for their political views. US and EU...

16 February 2012
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Journalists, Political Prisoners and Rights Activists under Pressure – Digest of Belarusian Politics

Belarusian authorities failed to release political prisoners despite some submitting pardon petitions to Lukashenka. In the past, Alexander Lukashenka has hinted that as soon as he received a pardon request from them they would be released. The authorities also...

23 January 2012
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Pressure against Activists and Independent Media – Digest of Belarusian Politics

Belarusian authorities maintain their pressure against independent media and activists. Last week was marked by new measures against political prisoners Syarhey Kavalenka and Milakay Autukhovich as well as Vitsebsky Kurier and Arche independent outlets. Hunger-striking opposition activist Syarhey Kavalenka being force-fed in Vitsyebsk jail. On...

29 December 2011
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2011: Year Under The Sign Of Crackdown

The year of 2011 was in many respects a unique year for Belarus. Unlike a regular year, it started not on 1 January but rather on 19 December of the previous year. On that day the presidential election took...