MP Anna Kanopatskaya is attempting to expand communication channels between society and authorities
MP Anna Kanopatskaya has proposed that people send their questions to the government through her. Previously, the authorities thwarted the opposition's attempt to introduce amendments to the Electoral Code through their representative in the parliament and failed to share the results of work of the interdepartmental working group led by the Central Election Commission on this issue. In addition to political claims, the opposition is attempting to use its MP to put pressure on the authorities regarding controversial issues of concern for some population groups, such as urban development and construction in the capital city. So far, there were no tangible results from such pressure, however, it has allowed to create an additional communication channel between society and the authorities and prompt officials to become more open to demands of the population discontent with the state policy.
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.