Belarusian opposition continues to regroup before elections
Last week, ‘Fair World’, the leftist party decided to nominate its leader Sergei Kalyakin candidate for the presidential election-2015. While commenting on his nomination, Kalyakin talked about the need to reformat the opposition coordination structures in order to strengthen positions of the left-wing parties and movements. Kalyakin’s programme includes support for the basic ideas of the so-called ‘coalition for non-recognition’. Uladzimir Nyaklyaeu, who has left "Tell the Truth!" campaign, held an organisational meeting to establish a new movement – “For statehood and independence of Belarus” and started preparing for the founding congress. Apparently, this new movement is being created for the future, which reduces the probability of Nyaklyaeu’s nomination for the presidential elections in 2015.
The Belarusian authorities regard the Catholic conference as yet another international event to promote Minsk as a global negotiating platform. Minsk’s proposal to organise a meeting between the Roman-Catholic Church and the Russian Orthodox Church is rather an image-making undertaking than a serious intention. However, the authorities could somewhat extend the opportunities for the Roman-Catholic Church in Belarus due to developing contacts with the Catholic world.
Minsk is attempting to lay out a mosaic from various international religious, political and sportive events to shape a positive image of Belarus for promoting the Helsinki 2.0 idea.
Belarus’ invitation to the head of the Holy See for a meeting with the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church should be regarded as a continuation of her foreign policy efforts in shaping Minsk’s peacekeeping image and enhancing Belarus’ international weight. The Belarusian authorities are aware that their initiative is unlikely to find supporters among the leadership of the Russian Orthodox Church in Moscow. In Russia, isolationist sentiments prevail.
In addition, for domestic audiences, the authorities make up for the lack of tangible economic growth with demonstrations of growth in Minsk’s authority at international level through providing a platform for religious, sportive and other dialogues.