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BULLETINS INFOFOCUS № 11

E-bulletin of IISEPS Center for Documentation, N 11, 2004 (only Russian)

Content:

Introduction

Theme of the month:
President’s Speech in Parliament: Liberalization Course or Tightening of Screws?

Person of the month
Ural Latypov and Leonid Erin: Victims of Clannish War or Staff Reshuffle?

Document of the month:
EU Resolution on Belarus: Act of Moral Support or Interference into Home Affairs?

Organization of the month:
Parliament: Body of Professional Administration or Body to Approve Executive Power Decisions?

Introduction:

Dear readers!

 

We offer to your attention the next issue of Infofocus bulletin. Following the parliamentary election and the referendum, a major issue that currently worries public figures and experts is where A. Lukashenko will lead the country now, whether his politics will change and how it will change, if it will. In his speech to the new Parliament, the president gave a comprehensive answer. As he said, the current course won’t change and certain adjustments will be done in some fields only (education, medicine, struggle against bureaucracy, etc.). Upon this, our “Issue of Month” is publicizing of country’s further development course. Why didn’t A. Lukashenko make an attempt, while in such a firm position, to expand his social basis or didn’t make any promises on probable liberalization of political regime in the country? Where will the current policy lead the country in practice? How will internal political situation in the country and its relations with the entire world change? We asked these questions to A. Dynko, Editor of newspaper Nasha Niva, and A. Krasutsky, Deputy Chair of the parliamentary commission for international affairs and CIS.
This time our column “Person of Month” is given to two public figures – already dismissed former KGB Chief L. Erin and presidential administration chief U. Latypov. What is the cause of these resignations? Is there any connection between them? Does this mean that the president distances himself from Russia (both officials were rumored to have close ties with Russian administration)? How will these resignations influence the moods in the Cabinet and actual foreign policy-making? We present you the opinions of P. Akulov, Head of Analytical Dept of the Belarusian Press Center, and T. Protko, Chairman of the Belarusian Helsinki Committee, on this issue.
In September, our “Document of Month” column publicized EU statement on visa ban into EU (as well as to 11 more European states) applied to four high-ranking Belarusian officials suspected of involvement in disappearances of well-known opposition figures and a journalist. Law violations registered by OSCE observers during parliamentary election and referendum have aroused strongly negative response in the West expressed in EU’s new statement. This time it decided to deny entrance to the Belarusian officials guilty of violating the election law or of persecuting those who protested against referendum gerrymander. Why has the EU chosen such a hotly argued instrument of influence on the official Minsk (as regards its efficiency)? Who will get on a new “black list”? Will its publicizing become the first step of new Western policy towards Belarus? We offer you the opinions of A. Sam, PhD in Political Sciences from the Manheim University, Germany, and S. Kostyan, Deputy Chair of the parliamentary commission for international affairs and CIS.
In our opinion, the Belarusian Parliament has become the “Organization of Month”. Its both renewed houses have already proceeded to their duties. How efficient is the new deputy corps? Having in mind that V. Konoplev has headed the Parliament, will its role and place differ from the previous parliament? Are deputies ready to fight for expansion of their powers? Won’t they turn new opposition? You will see in this part the standpoints of Supreme Council’s ex-speaker M. Grib and Deputy of the House of Representatives O. Abramova.
We hope that you will find these materials helpful and interesting. All comments and requests are, as usual, welcome!

IISEPS executive board

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