Not Resignation but Realism in Belarusian Democratic Opposition

Interview with Jörg Forbrig

22 March 2021

The state of war between Alyaksandr Lukashenka and the Belarusian people is cemented. At the moment, open protest cannot defeat the regime, but a parallel democratic state is developing. Meanwhile, there is still a tendency in the West to look to Moscow first when it comes to Eastern Europe, despite the EU giving legitimacy to the Belarusian democratic movement.

One year ago, Visegrad Insight published in partnership with the German Marshall Fund of the United States a special scenario-based report on the Eastern Partnership region. Since then, events in Belarus have rapidly unravelled along the lines of a scenario called Civic Emancipation.

As co-author of the report, Jörg Forbrig sheds light on the ongoing contestation between the democratic opposition and the regime in Belarus, suggesting what may happen next and how the European Union and the United States can support the Belarusian democracy movement.

Jörg Forbrig is a Senior Fellow and Director for Central and Eastern Europe at the German Marshall Fund of the United States, based in Berlin. He closely follows the Eastern neighbourhood of the EU and writes about democratisation and civil society.

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Philipp Fritz

Philipp Fritz is a foreign correspondent for German WELT and WELT AM SONNTAG based in Warsaw. He reports from Central Eastern Europe, first and foremost from Poland, but also from Ukraine, the Baltic countries and the Czech Republic. Before Philipp started reporting for WELT he worked for different German media companies, his texts were published amongst others in Die Zeit, Tageszeitung, Berliner Zeitung or Frankfurter Rundschau. (Photo Credit: Grayson Lauffenburger)

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