Minsk compensates for refusal to support Moscow over Ukraine
Last week, Belarus did not support Russia's attempt to remove the resolution on Ukraine from the OSCE PA agenda. Belarus’ decision has set a precedent in Russo-Belarusian agreements, which imply close cooperation and support on the international arena.
Apparently, Moscow has accepted Minsk's reasoning for strengthening Belarus’ image as a "donor of regional security" with an independent foreign policy. It is possible that the Kremlin is also interested in strengthening Minsk's position in international organisations, which could mean it would have an additional leverage to ease tension between the Kremlin and Western capitals.
Meanwhile, the Belarusian leadership has emphasised its ideological closeness with the Russian authorities by criticising Warsaw regarding Soviet historical heritage, a sensitive topic for Russia's domestic policy, which, probably mitigated the effect of Belarus's refusal to support Russia on the resolution on Ukraine.
According to Belstat, in August 7,600 people were dismissed, including 4,800 civil servants. Dismissals of civil servants were due to the optimisation in the public administration by up to 30%. Some civil servants would retain their job however would lose the status of a civil servant. Vacancies on the labour market are likely to reduce in number, thanks to the optimisation, the state administration would increase wages for public servants. The payroll fund for retained employees is likely to increase and some former state employees are likely to get jobs in affiliated organizations. The optimisation of the state apparatus should complete by January 1st, 2018, and some former civil servants are likely to join the ranks of the unemployed.