What kind of role should Ukraine play in resolving the post-election crisis in Belarus? (PARMENTIER – New Europe Center)

Dr. Florent Parmentier, Secretary General, the Center of political researches of Sciences Po (CEVIPOF), France 

“The post-electoral crisis in Belarus is crucial for Ukraine as well as for the EU and Russia. For many member-states, it has been seen as a new “solidarnosc moment” or a new “Baltic Way moment”, while others may be impressed by the peaceful character of the protest after several weeks of mobilization. European actors must deter Belarussian leadership to crackdown this social movement and support and engage the claim for new elections. In this perspective, Ukraine’s interest is to avoid destabilization, finding a balance between the necessary deterrence against harsh repression directed at the opposition and to engage protagonists from both sides. Should the incumbent power be ready to negotiate – under a mix of external pressure, defection in the repressive state apparatus or financial constraints – Ukraine might be seen as an honest broker, which would raise its profile internationally. The protestors have been willing so far to avoid any “geopoliticization” of the movement, fearing that it would give arguments for the pro-Lukashenka camp to stay in power.

Then, another question is whether the opposition is ready to govern in a difficult period. Ukraine and the EaP countries may have relevant experience to share in that field.”

The text and a couple of answers from experts (Paul d’Anieri, James Nixey, Daniel Szeligowski, etc.) can be found here.