Minsk uses international organizations to soften Vilnius position on Belarusian NPP construction
The Belarusian Foreign Ministry said that Lithuania was doing everything to compromise the IAEA SEED mission and its conclusions regarding the NPP in Astravets. The EU, including the Baltic States, lacks a consolidated position about the Belarusian NPP, which strengthens Minsk’s negotiating position in the dispute with Vilnius. Simultaneously, the Belarusian authorities hope to engage in an interstate dialogue with Lithuania in order to reverse public opinion in Lithuania about the NPP in Astravets. Minsk is willing to develop closer cooperation with international organisations in the nuclear industry in order to demonstrate its openness. In addition, the Belarusian authorities reckon that international organisations could help blocking unfavourable decisions by the EU in respect of the Belarusian NPP.
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.