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Russian Policy towards Belarus after 2020: At a Turning Point?

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Location: Webinar

Today’s focus on Belarus-Russia relations is primarily centred around one major question: - that is, whether Russia will be able to fully drag Belarus into the war. For decades of Lukashenka’s authoritarian rule, Russia has been steadily growing its influence and grip on Belarus’ regime (including its economy and state resources). Since the start of the 2020 political crisis in Belarus, this influence has only intensified, with Belarus’ territory being used as a platform for Russia’s ongoing aggression against Ukraine. The Kremlin's military presence in the country as well as the latter’s overgrown dependency from Russia in economic, social, political, and information domains put Belarus’ independence and sovereignty in peril. In this context, the Belarusian pro-democracy forces are trying to find mechanisms and tools to resist Russian influence and shape public opinion in Belarus vis-à-vis Russia.

What are the main premises of Russia’s approach towards Belarus after 2020? How has the start of Russia’s war against full-scale invasion of Ukraine changed the post-2020 dynamics? What are the sentiments in the Belarusian society vis-à-vis Russia? How do the Belarusian democratic forces pro-democracy forces approach the ‘Russian question’? And what can the international community do to help the Belarusian people resist Russia’s creeping intrusion into the country? These and other questions will be discussed in a panel discussion organised by the Oxford Belarus Observatory, in partnership with the Research Center of Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya Office, and the IGSD, University of Warwick. Please register here.

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