Minsk aspires to compensate for losses from oil with additional gas concessions
The talks about changing the formula for the gas price for Belarus are still ongoing, no decision, as yet. Belarusian government officials are demonstrating optimism and confidence that Russia will reduce the gas price. However, each month, the lack of the decision increases Belarus’ losses from the reduced supply of the Russian oil to the Belarusian refineries. However, the Belarusian leadership avoids the aggravation and is not willing to raise the issue publicly, unlike before. The Russian government insists that Belarus accepts and repays its debt for gas, and then it will be ready to resume oil supplies to Belarus in agreed volumes. Minsk waits for Moscow to accept concessions on gas price and until then pretends there is not tension in relations with the Kremlin.
During searches of social and "green" activists and anarchists, law enforcement has seized computers, mobile phones and publications. The authorities have also exerted additional pressure on supporters of unauthorized street protests and independent lawyers, who represented defendants in the White Legion case. The security services have stepped up the persecution of opponents before the street protests announced by the opposition. Apparently, the Belarusian authorities aspire that participants in street protests would reduce in number and that the low interest of the population to socio-political agenda before the local election campaign would retain.