Lukashenko divides spheres of influence between the security forces

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April 22, 2016 18:04

After the reform of law enforcement agencies in 2011, President Lukashenko redefines the limits of liability and the effect of various law enforcement agencies. The KGB will retain the right to control the political situation, and will be admitted to the promising economic projects such as building the nuclear power plant and customs control at CES.

President Lukashenko met with the leadership and staff of the State Security Committee on February 14.

After the creation of the Investigative Committee of Belarus in 2012, the powers of the KGB in conducting investigative activities were substantially limited. The domestic impact of this body needs to be overridden, which happened at the board and after it during the press briefing of the Committee representatives. 

The KGB has got an informal sanction of the President to the supervision of investment projects, such as the construction of nuclear power plant and control over the movement of goods within the Common Economic Space. Both projects are particularly capital intensive, and therefore important for the Belarusian elites.

Lukashenko gave KGB the sanction to monitor the progress of the parliamentary campaign in 2012. In practical terms this will most likely mean gaining control over the rank and file participants in the process of the KGB (the polling station commission, the executive committees, etc.). Mobilization campaign is also possible - opening the machinations of an external enemy, which is financing a \"fifth column\".

Recall that during the election campaign it is supposed to replace the existing ¾ of Parliament, and the loyalty of government employees (which include teachers - the main participants of election commissions, as well as the line police officers) is somewhat undermined by lower returns (incomes).

The probability of “residency” disclosure of foreign intelligence services during the election campaign is confirmed by the results of panel coverage in the press - parliamentary elections are firmly linked with the increased external threat in the words of the President and the press service of the KGB. We also recall that amendments to the legislation, imposing administrative, and in case of a second violation criminal penalties for receiving funds from foreign citizens or states, were adopted in 2011.

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Belarusian and Ukrainian Defence Ministries entangle in confrontation spiral
October 02, 2017 11:57
Фото: RFRM

Over the past year, military-political relations between Minsk and Kyiv have become complicated. Due to their high inertia and peculiarities, this downward trend would be extremely difficult to overcome.

The root cause of the crisis is the absence of a common political agenda in the Belarusian-Ukrainian relations. Minsk is looking for a market for Belarusian exports in Ukraine and offers its services as a negotiation platform for the settlement of the Russo-Ukrainian war, thereby hoping to avoid political issues in the dialogue with Kiev. Meanwhile, Ukraine is hoping for political support from Minsk in the confrontation with Moscow. In addition, Ukraine’s integration with NATO presupposes her common position with the Alliance in relation to Belarus. The NATO leadership regards the Belarusian Armed Forces as an integral part of the Russian military machine in the western strategic front (the Baltic states and Poland). In addition, the ongoing military reform in Ukraine envisages a reduction in the number of generals and the domestic political struggle makes some Ukrainian top military leaders targets in politically motivated attacks.

Hence, the criticism of Belarus coming from Ukrainian military leadership is dictated primarily by internal and external political considerations, as well as by the need to protect the interests of generals, and only then by facts.

For instance, initially, the Ukrainian military leadership made statements about 100,000 Russian servicemen allegedly taking part in the Russo-Belarusian military drill West-2017. Then the exercises were labelled quazi-open and military observers from Ukraine refused to provide their assessment, which caused a negative reaction in Minsk. Further, without citing specific facts, it was stated that Russia was building up its military presence in Belarus.

Apparently, the Belarusian and Ukrainian Defence Ministries have entangled in a confrontational spiral (on the level of rhetoric). Moreover, only a small part of the overly hidden process has been disclosed. That said, third states are very likely to take advantage of the situation (or have already done so). This is not only about Russia.

The Belarusian Defence Ministry officials are restrained in assessing their Ukrainian counterparts. However, such a restraint is not enough. Current military-political relations between Belarus and Ukraine are unlikely to stabilise without the intervention of both presidents.

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