The largest political movements agree on common elections tactic
Limited by the CEC participation of \"Tell the Truth!\" and \"For Freedom\" initiatives in the ongoing election campaign pushed them towards an agreement on a common tactic in the campaign. Tactical alliance between the two largest civic associations allows testing new methods of political participation and brings hope for continuation of consolidation processes after the elections.
On August 24th “Tell the Truth!” civil campaign and “For Freedom” movement issued a joint statement about the democratic forces’ common tactic in the ongoing election campaign.
In a joint statement, “For Freedom” and “Tell the Truth!” call voters and supporters in the democratic camp to join efforts to overcome political apathy, they offer mutual support to candidates, support to elections observers, and, as an experiment, propose an active boycott in one or two districts where there are no democratic candidates.
Until now the boycott campaign was visible on websites only. Apparently, registration by the CEC candidates from boycott supporters and their propaganda campaign, coupled with the “Tell the Truth!” and “For Freedom” experiment will make boycott more visible to the population. However, both, political tradition and sociological studies suggest that the election campaign failure in Belarus due to voters’ absence is impossible.
However, the tactical alliance between TT and FF gives hope that more serious processes will follow.
First of all, active participation in the election campaign will strengthen the positions and recognition of these two movements. “Civil contract”, a “Tell the Truth!” system of alternative representation of the citizens’ interests, in collaboration with the “For Freedom’s” “People’s Program” reinforce the democratic camp and represent a new strategic perspective after failed attempts to succeed through elections or revolution.
Moreover, the tactical alliance between TT and FF could help scrapping the trend for further opposition’s fragmentation and could be a sign of the centripetal processes’ start. Apparently, boycott supporters will also try to unite. Therefore by the end of the campaign democratic camp will resume its traditional bi-polar configuration.
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.