Russia and Eurasia
While Russia and Belarus made final preparations to kick off their quadrennial joint strategic-operational exercise Zapad 2021, the two countries’ air-defense and air force units were put on joint duty as part of the recently established training and combat center in Grodno Oblast, in western Belarus.
After the West extended additional sanctions against Belarus and following Belarusian ruler Alyaksandr Lukashenka’s big press conference on August 9, the Kremlin began signaling its readiness to implement the so-called Armenian model to resolve the political crisis in the country.
The pressure on the regime from the three sides will only intensify.
The Belarusian authorities’ forced landing of the Vilnius-bound Ryanair Flight 4978 at Minsk airport, on May 23, and the arrest of the opposition NEXTA Telegram channel founder Roman Protasevich, who was traveling aboard the plane, raised the political crisis happening inside Belarus since last August to the top of the global agenda (see EDM, May 24, 25). Much uncertainty remains about which actors were actually behind this special operation not to mention their real motives and ultimate goals.
In a ritual that is becoming as frequent as it is increasingly empty, Alyaksandr Lukashenka is heading to Russia yet again to meet with Vladimir Putin.
The air forces of Russia and Belarus will begin joint air-defense missions out of one of the Belarusian airfields this summer.
As Belarus braced for a fresh round of protests this week and as opposition leader Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya called for tough new sanctions against Alyaksandr Lukashenka’s regime in a Congressional testimony, the Kremlin has been busy laying the groundwork to tighten its grip on Russia’s far smaller but strategically important western neighbor.
They went skiing. They rode snowmobiles. And they lauded their “strategic partnership and alliance,” pledging to deepen integration between their two countries.
Moscow is considering, among other things, rather tough approaches.
The 2020 political crisis in Belarus erupted against the backdrop of major
confrontation in the Belarus–Russia relations. The article looks into the role of
Russia and domestic Belarusian factors in creating prerequisites for this political
In his video message marking the International Day of United Nations (UN) Peacekeepers on May 29, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) Ambassador to the UN Zhang Jun (张军) said that China is a major contributor to UN peacekeeping operations (UNPKO) and will “implement its commitment to multilateralism and world peace with concrete actions and make greater contributions to peacekeeping operations for the maintenance of international peace and security” (Xinhua, May 30).
Although Belarus and China established diplomatic relations in 1992, and adopted a joint declaration on establishing a comprehensive strategic partnership in 2013, the most dynamic cooperation between Minsk and Beijing has been developing over the past few years.
China's interest in Belarus looks to be cooling despite its warm words for embattled strongman Alexander Lukashenko, who is attempting to withstand unprecedented protests and intense geopolitical pressure.
On the other hand, this also means that Belarus’s economic resilience has not been properly tested for a possible disruption of the economic cooperation with Russia yet.
The comment of Director of Center for Strategic and Foreign Policy Studies Arseny Sivitsky appeared in the March 2020 issue of Petroleum Review.
In the mid-1990s, Minsk signed several treaties and agreements with Moscow that prioritized a pro-Russian geopolitical orientation...
Talks in Sochi last December confirmed that Belarusian-Russian relations have reached an impasse
The Belarus–Russia talks on “deepening the integration” have been controversial and have resonated both internationally and domestically.
Yuri Tsarik reflects on the negotiations held in Sochi on December 6-7
Parliamentary elections are finally scheduled in Belarus.
Following predictions by Russian military intelligence (GRU) that the West wants to separate Belarus from Russia and incorporate it into the Western orbit...
The Russian-Ukrainian conflict of 2014 and the subsequent militarypolitical confrontation between Russia and the West marked the transition of Russia to a new strategic doctrine...
Belarus adopted a new Information Security Concept (ISC) on March 18, 2019, based on a resolution from the Belarus Security Council (President.gov.by, March 18)
Yury Tsarik considers how and why Belarusian-Russian relations have hit a new low
March saw a shift of accents in the work of the government and media in Belarus. Excessive attention to tensions in Belarus-Russia relations in January-February was replaced by an emphasis on domestic and economic policies. However, these accents turned out to be mostly negatively colored as well.
What Belarus’ new Information Security Concept says and what consequences it will have for the evolution of its political regime
In February 2019, Belarusian leadership paid increased attention to the issues of information security.
Belarus’s ongoing drive to cautiously normalize relations with the West has raised concerns from Russian military intelligence...
Yuri Tsarik contends that relations between Russia and Belarus may have reached an “integration impasse,” but there were at least a few constructive results from February’s bilateral talks in Sochi.
The Kremlin’s concerns about maintaining Belarus within its geopolitical sphere of influence have been mounting as of late