Need an Expert? Belarus: Kolesnikova's arrest and Lukashenko's pivot to Russia

Posted on Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Protesters in Belarus

Members of the media may directly contact the following expert(s):

Ivan Katchanovski (English, Ukrainian, Russian – anglais, ukrainien et russe)
Part-time Professor, Political Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences

Professor Ivan Katchanovski specializes in politics and conflicts of post-Soviet states. He can comment on the current protests in Belarus, in comparison to the Euromaidan in Ukraine.

“Mass protests against Lukashenko and state repression against opposition leaders and activists continues in Belarus. The arrest of Maria Kolesnikova and other opposition leaders plus the exile of many of them are the latest manifestations of the attempts by the Lukashenko regime to suppress the opposition protests.

His various statements and frequent phone calls and meetings with Russian leaders suggest that Lukashenko is also trying to secure the backing of the Russian government. Such political, economic and – possibly – military backing is likely to involve significant concessions by Lukashenko.

He also claimed that he had an intercepted phone call between Poland and Germany showing that poisoning of (Russian opposition leader) Alexei Navalny was faked and that he gave the recording to the Russian government.  However, the recording broadcast by the Belarusian state television channel appears to be fake itself. Lukashenko now is in conflict with the West and all of Belarus neighbors with the exception of Russia.”

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