Belarus
Does Europeanisation require a geopolitical choice?
in The European Union and its eastern neighbourhood
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Belarus is a nation that sees itself as a part of Europe in terms of geography and history. However, the authorities in Minsk have their own vision and understanding of what should be the foundations of Belarus-European Union (EU) relations. This vision essentially dismisses the critical engagement policy based on EU values. The EU is Belarus's 'principal partner in trade and [an] important partner in sectoral and regional development'. This chapter aims to understand the positions of both Minsk and Brussels in their search for an effective framework of bilateral cooperation which would take into account the geopolitical configurations in the region. It addresses the role of Russia and the 'Russian world' concept promoted by its authorities, as well as the impact of the Ukrainian conflict on the situation in Belarus. Finally, the chapter focuses on the mechanisms which could contribute to mutual Belarus-EU engagement within existing windows of opportunity.

The European Union and its eastern neighbourhood

Europeanisation and its twenty-first-century contradictions

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