Opportunistic Discipline: Using Eurasian Integration To Improve Sanctions Against Belarus

By: Ilya Zlatkin


“The last true dictatorship in the heart of Europe.”1 Since former United States Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice coined this phrase in 2005, this less than flattering title has clung to Belarus.2 For its part, however, the former Soviet republic’s government has done enough to maintain the moniker. Under President Alexander Lukashenko’s rule, the authorities have quashed nonviolent demonstrations, imprisoned political adversaries, and dominated media outlets. 3 After thousands of Belarusians protested Lukashenko’s reelection in December 2010, the Belarusian president further clamped down on the public’s right to assemble.4 In addition, seven opposing candidates found themselves behind bars.

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