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Presidential Elections in Belarus: Why the West Should Not Hold Its Breath
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On 1 September the Central Elections Committee of Belarus announced that four presidential candidates had submitted enough signatures to run in elections scheduled for 11 October this year. Although few question the outcome of this elections and the official victory...
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...

31 July 2015
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Belarus-EU Thaw: Will It Last This Time?

On 13 July, the Council of the European Union once again removed restrictions against several Belarusian officials and entities subjected to an EU-wide travel ban and asset freeze. That decision amended Belarus sanctions listings introduced after the failure of Belarus...

12 June 2015
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Belarus and the United States: Stepping Stones to Nowhere

On June 10, US President Barack Obama extended sanctions against Belarusian leaders for one more year. Responding to the news, press secretary of the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs Dzmitry Mironchyk observed a “clear improvement” in Belarus-US relations in...

18 May 2015
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Sanctions, Peace Talks, Bologna Process: Is There Hope for Change?

After a second attempt, on 14 May Belarus joined the Bologna process and the group of 47 countries forming the common European Higher Education Area (EHEA). While Belarus's acceptance into the Bologna process may open up prospects for long-term...

6 May 2015
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From Sanctions to Summits: Belarus after the Ukraine Crisis

Belarus is returning to the international spotlight, but for once, not just as the “last dictatorship in Europe”. The two summits that Minsk hosted in the past year on the conflict in east Ukraine indicate a tentative shift in...

16 March 2015
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Belarus: No Appetite for Revolution?

The political year for Belarusian opposition will begin with a traditional rally on the so called Freedom Day 25 March. This day, which celebrates proclamation of the Belarusian People's Republic in 1918, in the past was bringing to the...

5 November 2014
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Ice Hockey Diplomacy in The Desert, Sanctions and Human Rights Criticism – Belarus Foreign Policy Digest

Alexander Lukashenka spent five days in Abu Dhabi meeting with local officials at various levels, managing to get in a game or two of hockey and some sightseeing as well. A UN report presented on 28 October harshly criticised the...

21 October 2014
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Belarus Moves Towards Full-Scale Border Control With Russia – Belarus Security Digest

In a somewhat uncharacteristic move, Belarus started working on a full-scale border guard on the Belarusian-Russian border. Western sanctions are impeding the development of industrial cooperation between Belarus and Russia, which still hopes to draw CIS countries into its confrontation...

26 September 2014
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Belarus Smuggles EU Food to Russia Despite Sanctions

On 19 September Russian Agricultural Control announced that Russia can restrict the imports of fish and dairy from a number of Belarusian companies. These companies allegedly violate the sanctions regime by re-exporting EU products under fake labels. Since the very...

19 August 2014
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Belarus Hopes To Cash In On Russian Sanctions

Earlier this month, Russia introduced a full embargo on imports of meat, fish, dairy, fruit and vegetables from the European Union (EU), United States, Australia, Canada and Norway. Moscow sought to retaliate for the sanctions imposed by the West following...

12 November 2013
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Is Europe Losing Interest in Belarus?

On 24-26 October the political directors of the Swedish and Polish foreign ministries – Torbjorn Sohlstrom and Jaroslaw Bratkiewicz – visited Minsk. They came instead of their bosses Karl Bildt and Radoslav Sikorski, who preferred to go to Chisinau, Kyiv and Tbilisi​. This shows Europeans'...

19 September 2013
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IMF Loans: The Money We Do Not Need?

A controversial event took place next to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) office in the middle of the summer in Washington, DC.Dozens of Belarusians stretched eye-catching posters encouraging the IMF to assist Belarus....

5 June 2013
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Paleckis’ Report, National Referendum and Sanctions – Belarus Press Review

Washington lifted their sanctions on a Belarusian company. What does it mean for the future of Belarus-EU relations? Further integration in the post-Soviet space and Minsk's role in the process, living standards of Belarusians are among the most discussed in the...