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Systemic crisis in Alexander Lukashenko's regime. OSW Commentary No. 66, 2011-10-28

Iwanski, Tadeusz and Klysinski, Kamil (2011) Systemic crisis in Alexander Lukashenko's regime. OSW Commentary No. 66, 2011-10-28. [Policy Paper]

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    Measures undertaken by the Belarusian government in the areas of the economy, internal affairs and foreign policy in recent months have proven increasingly ineffective. Despite the deteriorating macroeconomic situation, Minsk is not implementing the reforms necessary to combat the crisis and its activity is limited only to feigned actions and administrative regulations. As a result, the economic situation is worsening but the chances of obtaining external loans as support, for example from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), are decreasing. At the same time there is mounting fear among the regime of social unrest, therefore by raising salaries of the least well-off groups of citizens it is trying to compensate for the increased costs of living. On the other hand, the government is extending the scope of control over society and competences of enforcement bodies. Belarus’s room for manoeuvre in foreign policy has also been diminishing substantially. Despite the EU’s declared willingness to reach an agreement and its encouragement, Lukashenko is not ready to make concessions in the political sphere (e.g. to rehabilitate political prisoners), and this is hindering the normalisation of relations with the West. Minsk furthermore feels a mounting pressure from Moscow, making the Belarusian negotiating position ever weaker. The lack of freedom of manoeuvre in foreign policy, no possibility to maintain a costly economic model and the lack of support from the majority of society all prove that Alexander Lukashenko’s regime is in severe crisis. The system he established is no longer able to respond to current threats with adequate and effective strategies. This situation is challenging the regime’s stability and calls into question its viability in the longer term.

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    Item Type: Policy Paper
    Subjects for non-EU documents: Countries > Belarus
    Subjects for EU documents: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Series and Periodicals: UNSPECIFIED
    EU Annual Reports: UNSPECIFIED
    Series: Series > Centre for Eastern Studies (OSW) > OSW Commentary
    Depositing User: Phil Wilkin
    Official EU Document: No
    Language: English
    Date Deposited: 12 Dec 2014 14:53
    Number of Pages: 6
    Last Modified: 12 Dec 2014 14:53

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