19 April 2023: A Conversation with Valery Kavaleuski, Deputy Head at the United Transitional Cabinet of Belarus; Representative for Foreign Affairs, Office of Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya

(09-03-2023) Moderator: prof. Fabienne Bossuyt, Ghent Institute for International and European Studies (GIES)

Date and time:
19 April 2023, 17:00-18:00 CET, Zoom

Registration Link:

Katsiaryna Lozka (Katsiaryna.Lozka@UGent.be)

Description of the event:
Valery KavaleuskiThis online event will feature a high-level representative of the Belarusian pro-democracy forces, Valery Kavaleuski. The focus of the event will be on the current state of the anti-authoritarian movement led by Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya, their institutionalization efforts, as well as their relationship with the European Union (EU).

Mr Valery Kavaleuski will share his insights on the political crisis in Belarus following the 2020 “elections”, as well as the impact of Russia's war against Ukraine on the pro-democracy movement of Belarus. The event will primarily focus on two dimensions. First, we will discuss the current state of the Belarusian pro-democracy movement, their reform efforts, and the main challenges that they face. Second, we will look at their relations with the EU. Russia’s fully-fledged war against Ukraine and the Lukashenka regime’s role in it prompted Belarusians to reconsider their place in Europe and geopolitical preferences. Although the 2020 protests were initially driven by domestic grievances and did not have a geopolitical agenda, the outbreak of Russia's full-scale war led the Belarusian pro-democracy forces to reassess their position and consider making a choice regarding the country’s geopolitical orientation.

This event will provide a unique opportunity to engage in a discussion with the representative for foreign affairs of Belarus’ Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya. Although the situation in Belarus receives limited media coverage, the country remains in a state of deep political crisis and has been further impacted by its involvement in Russia's war. Given the rapidly evolving events in Belarus and the region, this event will provide a valuable opportunity to discuss the changes and challenges that Belarus is currently facing, both within its borders and in exile.