Timeline Belarus

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Zaprudnik history: http://wilkes.edu/~gouuubd/pages/belstor.html
 Belarus is about the size of Kansas.
    (SFC, 10/19/04, p.A6)

1067        Minsk (Belarus) was founded.
    (SFC, 7/5/97, p.C2)

1410        Jul 15, Lithuanian-Polish forces defeated the Teutonic Knights at the Battle of Tannenberg, Prussia, thereby halting the Knights’ eastward expansion along the Baltic and hastening their decline. Vytautas and Jogaila with hired mercenaries from Belarus along with Tartars and Czechs defeated the Teutonic Knights between Grunvald (Zalgiriai) and Tannenberg southeast of Malburg. Grand Master Ulrich von Jungingen and many of his nobles were killed. The war officially ended with the Treaty of Thorn in which the Knights gave up Zemaitija to Vytautas.
    (COE)(H of L, 1931, p.52)(DrEE, 11/9/96, p.6)

1484          Mar 4, Casimir (Kazimierz), the son of Lithuania’s Grand Duke Casimir, died in Grodno at age 25. In 1602 he was declared a saint and protector of Lithuania. St. Casimir was born Oct 3,1458, in Cracow.
    (LHC, 3/4/03)

1566          Mar 11, The 2nd Lithuanian statutes went into effect and upheld a democracy of landowners. The Statute of Lithuania gave the Seimas legislative power. The parliament had developed since Casimir ascended to the Polish throne. It was composed of an upper chamber or Council of Lords and assemblies of noblemen. They assembled in Vilnius or Brest-Litovsk.
    (DrEE, 10/5/96, p.5)(LHC, 3/11/03)

1582        Sep 8, A small Belorussian-Lithuanian force overcame a larger Muscovite force.
    (SFC, 9/2/96, p.A12)

1812        Nov 29, The last elements of Napoleon Bonaparte's Grand Armee retreated across the Beresina River in Russia. Tens of thousands of French troops and civilians perished when the Russians attacked Napoleon's army as it crossed the Berezina River in Belarus on the punishing retreat from Moscow. The following Spring it was recorded that 32,000 bodies were rounded up and burned on the river banks near Studianka.
    (HN, 11/29/99)(AP, 11/26/07)(www.wtj.com/articles/berezina/)

1887        Jul 7, Marc Chagall (d.1985), French painter and designer, was born in Vitebsk, Belarus, Russia, as Moishe Shagal. He left there in 1907 to attend art school in St. Petersburg. He was sent to Paris by a benefactor and befriended Chaim Soutine and Alexander Archipenko and stayed until 1914. "From late cubism he adopted a manner of making forms and space interpenetrate." His work included "Les Amoureux" (The Lovers - 1916), a portrait of himself and his wife. In 1996 it sold for $4.2 mil. In 1997 Mikhail Guerman published "Marc Chagall: The Land of My Heart - Russia."
    (SFC,7/2/96,p.E3)(WSJ,10/8/96,p.A20)(SFEC,12/797,Par p.6)(HN, 7/7/01)

1893-1943    Chaim Soutine, artist, was born in Minsk. He studied art in Vilnius and moved to Paris. His work is seen in 3 distinct ways: as a crude primitive, as a master continuing in the French tradition, and as a prophet who helped form later painters.
    (WSJ, 5/14/98, p.A20)

1903        In Belarus Jews made history by being the first to resist a pogrom, defending 26 synagogues and prayer houses.
    (AP, 4/12/08)

1905        May 26, There was a pogrom against Jews in Minsk, Byelorussia.
    (MC, 5/26/02)

1918          Mar 3, Germany, Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria, the Ottoman Empire and Russia signed the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, which ended Russian participation in World War I. Germany and Austria forced Soviet Russia to sign the Peace of Brest, which called for the establishment of 5 independent countries: Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Ukraine. The Treaty of Brest-Litovsk, which ended Russian participation in World War I, was annulled by the November 1918 armistice. The treaty deprived the Soviets of White Russia.
    (HN, 3/3/99)(LHC, 3/1/03)(AP, 3/3/08)

1918        Mar 25, Belarus declared independence.
    (LHC, 3/25/03)

1919          Feb 27, The Bolsheviks took Lithuania and joined it with Belarus as a single Soviet republic. Litbel lasted until June 25.
    (LHC, 2/27/03)

1922        Dec 30, Vladimir I. Lenin proclaimed the establishment of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. The Soviet Union was organized as a federation of RSFSR, Ukrainian SSR, Belorussian SSR and Transcaucasian SSR.
    (AP, 12/30/97)(HN, 12/30/98)(MC, 12/30/01)

1922        The Belorussian Soviet Socialist Republic used a red and green flag.
    (SFC, 9/2/96, p.A12)

1923        Aug 15, Simon Peres [Persky], premier of Israel, was born in Belarus.
    (www.ourcampaigns.com/CandidateDetail.html?CandidateID=30248)

1937-1941    Some 2 million people were killed during Stalinist purges on the outskirts of Minsk.
    (SSFC, 9/2/01, p.A14)

1940-1945    Szymon Serafimowicz, a retired carpenter, was scheduled to be tried in 1996 in England for the killing of three Jews in Belarus in the early 1940s.
    (SFC, 4/16/96, p.A-9)

1941        Jun, The Nazis invaded Belarus in the summer of 1941. In Domachevo the Schutzmannschaft, a German-run police force was staffed by volunteers.
    (SFEC, 2/14/99, p.A23)

1941        Oct 14, The 1st mass deportations took place at Kovno, Lodz, Minsk & Riga.
    (MC, 10/14/01)

1941        Jun 24, Germans advanced into Russia and took Vilnius, Brest-Litovsk and Kaunas.
    (MC, 6/24/02)

1941        Jul 18, SS troops drowned 40 Jews in Dvina River in Byelorussia.
    (MC, 7/18/02)

1941        Nov, Some 4,000 who remained in Gomel, Belarus, were shot by the Nazis. Most of the 40,000 who had lived there had managed to escape before the Nazis arrived.
    (AP, 4/12/08)   

1941-1943    The three Jewish Bielski brothers, escaped Nazi-occupied Poland and established a refuge in the forests of Belarus. By the end of WWII they succeeded in saving some 1,200 men, women and children. In 2003 Peter Duffy authored "The Bielski Brothers: The True Story of Three Men Who Defied the Nazis, Saved 1,200 Jews and Built a Village in the Forest." Their story was depicted in the 2009 film “Defiance,” directed by Edward Zwick.
    (SSFC, 7/13/03, p.M4)(WSJ, 1/2/08, p.W1)

1942        Jul 28, Nazis liquidated 10,000 Jews in Minsk, Russia.
    (SC, 7/28/02)

1942        Jul 30, German SS einsatzgruppen death battalions killed 25,000 Jews in Minsk, Byelorussia.
    (MC, 7/30/02)

1942        Jul 31, The German SS gassed some 1,000 Jews in Minsk, Byelorussia.
    (MC, 7/31/02)

1942        Aug 7, The Nazi 36th Police Battalion, made up of ethnic Estonians, massacred some 2,500 Jews at Novogrudok, Belarus (according to the Simon Wiesenthal Foundation).
    (SSFC, 2/15/04, p.A4)

1942        Oct 29, Nazis murdered some 16,000 Jews in Pinsk, Soviet Union.
    (MC, 10/29/01)

1942        Oct, On Yom Kippur 2,900 Jews were killed in Domachevo.
    (SFEC, 2/14/99, p.A23)

1942        Nov 6, Nazis executed 12,000 Minsk ghetto Jews.
    (MC, 11/6/01)

1942        Anthony Sawoniuk was convicted in London in 1999 for the murders of 2 Jewish women in Domachevo in this year. He was sentenced to life in prison.
    (SFC, 4/3/99, p.A4)

1943        Sep 11, The Jewish ghettos of Minsk & Lida in Byelorussia were liquidated.
    (MC, 9/11/01)

1943        Oct, Germans demolished the ghetto buildings of Minsk, known as the Yama, or Pit, in an effort to find Jews in hiding. 2,000 remaining Jews were rounded up and killed. More than 100,000 Jews were killed there from August 1941.
    (AP, 10/21/08)

1943        Michael Gorshkow, Estonian-Nazi interrogator, helped round up some 3,000 Jewish men, women and children at Slutsk, Belarus, where they were shot to death.
    (SSFC, 2/15/04, p.A4)

1944        Jun 29, A Russian assault battalion opened fire on German forces on the outskirts of Bobruisk, Belarus. As many as half of the 10,000 German soldiers were killed. In 1962 Nikolai Litvin, a Russian soldier present that day, completed his memoir. It was finally published in 2007 under the title ”800 Days on the Eastern Front.”
    (WSJ, 6/30/07, p.P6)

1944        Minsk was liberated from the Nazis.
    (SFC, 7/5/97, p.C2)

1955        May 16, Olga Korbut, Olympic gymnast (2 golds-1972), was born in Grodno, Byelorussia.
    (HN, 5/16/98)(MC, 5/16/02)

1961        In Belarus the Gomel Jewish cemetery was destroyed when a sports stadium was built. The remains lay largely undisturbed until the spring of 2008 when reconstruction began and a bulldozer turned up the first bones. Workers said they had no choice but to consign the bones to city dumps.
    (AP, 4/12/08)

1972        Aug 31, Olga Korbut (b.1955) of Belarus, USSR, won Olympic gold medal in floor exercises and the balance beam.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olga_Korbut)(AP, 8/31/02)

1986        Apr 26, The world's worst nuclear accident occurred in Pripyat, Ukraine, north of Kiev, at 1:23 a.m. as the Chernobyl atomic power plant exploded. A 300-hundred-square-mile area was evacuated and 31 people died as unknown thousands were exposed to radioactive material that spread in the atmosphere throughout the world. An exploded at Chernobyl, Ukraine, and burned for 10 days. About 70% of the fallout fell in Belarus. Damage was estimated to be up to $130 billion. By 1998 10,000 Russian "liquidators" involved in the cleanup had died and thousands more became invalids. It was later estimated that the released radioactivity was 200 times the combined bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki. It was later found that Soviet scientists were authorized to carry out experiments that required the reactor to be pushed to or beyond its limits, with safety features disabled.
    (WSJ, 11/8/95, p.A-1)(SFC, 4/27/98, p.A14)(SFC, 12/18/99, p.C4)(AP, 4/26/05)(Econ, 10/6/07, p.18)

1988        Mass graves were discovered in the Kurapaty region outside of Minsk. Initial reports said the bodies belonged to people killed in Stalin purges. Pres. Lukashenko later said the bodies belonged to Belarusian Jews killed by Nazis.
    (SSFC, 9/2/01, p.A14)

1990        Mar 4, Voters in the Soviet republics of Russia, Byelorussia and the Ukraine participated in local and legislative elections, resulting in notable gains for reformists and nationalists.
    (AP, 3/4/00)

1990        Jul 27, White Russia (Belarus) declared sovereignty.
    (www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0107325.html)

1991        Apr 10, A day after Mikhail Gorbachev appealed for a moratorium on all strikes, demonstrations and rallies, an estimated 200,000 workers in Byelorussia defied the Soviet president by staging a work stoppage in the capital, Minsk.
    (AP, 4/10/01)

1991        Aug 25, White-Russia (Belarus) declared it's independence.
    (www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0107325.html)

1991        Sep 28, Stanislau Shushkevich became the first leader and head of state of independent Belarus after the dissolution of the Soviet Union.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanislau_Shushkevich)

1991        Dec 8, Russia, Byelorussia and Ukraine declared the Soviet national government dead, forging a new alliance to be known as the Commonwealth of Independent States. Stanislau Shushkevich of Belarus, together with the leaders of Russia (Boris Yeltsin) and Ukraine (Leonid Kravchuk), signed a declaration that the Soviet Union was dissolved and replaced by the Commonwealth of Independent States; the declaration later became known as the "Belavezha Accords".
    (AP, 12/8/01)(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanislau_Shushkevich)

1991        Dec, Boris Yeltsin, Ukrainian Pres. Leonid Kravchuk, and Belarus Pres. Stanislav Shuskevich met in a hunting lodge to proclaim the Soviet Union null and void and to form a loose Commonwealth of Independent States.
    (SFC, 9/9/98, p.A10)

1991        Belarus gained independence.
    (G&M, 1/31/96, p.A-8)

1994        Jan 26, The Belarus Parliament ousted its reform-minded leader, Stanislav Shushkevich, in protest against his support for market economics.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stanislau_Shushkevich)

1994        Alyaksandr Lukashenko was elected president over PM Viacheslav Kebich.
    (SFC, 9/2/96, p.A14)(www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0107325.html)

1994        A proposal was made to unite the monetary systems of Belarus and Russia, but fell apart when Russia refused to accept the financial burden of propping up Belarus.
    (WSJ, 3/25/96, p.A-14)

1994        Belarus gave up the nuclear weapons it inherited in the breakup of the Soviet Union, but it retained its highly enriched uranium stocks.
    (AP, 12/1/10)

1995        Apr, Seventeen lawmakers from the Belorussian Peoples Front (BNF), who refused to leave the parliament in protest of Lukashenko’s call to dump the red and white flag, were beat up by police and dragged out.
    (SFC, 9/2/96, p.A14)

1995        Sep 12, The Belarussian military border guards shot down a hydrogen balloon during an international race, killing its two American pilots.
    (SFC, 9/2/96, p.A12)(AP, 9/12/00)

1996        Jan, Alexander Lukashenko, president, brought back an almost identical version of its Soviet era flag, and installed Russian as an official language. 95% of the people speak Russian as their main tongue.
    (G&M, 1/31/96, p.A-8)

1996        Apr 2, A treaty between Russia and Belarus was to be signed April 2. The plan was to create a supranational supreme council with its own anthem, flag and budget with members retaining sovereignty and national budgets. Other former Soviet states would be welcome to join.
    (WSJ, 3/25/96, p.A-1)

1996        May, Police battled demonstrators in central Minsk who protested the pro-Russian policies of Pres. Alexander Lukashenko.
    (SFC, 5/31/96, A16)

1996        Jun 14, Victor Gonchar, Lukashenko’s most active critic in parliament, was fired upon by police.
    (SFC, 9/2/96, p.A14)

1996        Aug 8, A crackdown on commercial banks was begun with new rules and sharp restrictions and in some cases nationalization. All banks must register by Jan 1, 1997.
    (WSJ, 8/9/96, p.A1,7)

1996        Aug 23, The Pres. said too many are trying to dodge the annual 92% tax on corporate earnings.
    (WSJ, 8/23/96, p.A8)

1996        Sep 6, Belarus lawmakers challenged the president and added amendments to a referendum that proposed the elimination of the presidency, popular election of local governors and tougher controls on government spending. Earlier in the week Lukashenko had the tax service freeze the accounts of 5 leading independent newspapers. They set Nov 24 as the voting date to abolish the presidency.
    (SFC, 9/7/96, p.A10)(WSJ, 10/8/96, p.A17)

1996        Nov 7, Pres. Lukashenko called a national referendum to obtain power to disband the legislature and extend his term of office from 5 to 7 years. His new constitution extended his office by 10 years, allowed him to appoint judges, boards and deputies, and would ban private property in the country.
    (SFC, 9/2/96, p.A14)

1996        Nov 18, Belarus PM Mikhail Chigir resigned and 75 of 199 lawmakers signed petitions to impeach president Lukashenko.
    (SFC, 11/19/96, p.A13)

1996        Nov 21, Belarus still had 18 SS-25 nuclear ICBMs.
    (WSJ, 11/21/96, p.A22)

1996        Nov 24, Parliament set its own date for a vote to approve the abolishment of the office of the president. Lukashenko had the backing of the security apparatus which numbered about 150,000 in the pop. of 10 mil.
    (WSJ, 10/8/96, p.A17)

1996        Nov 25, In Belarus Pres. Lukashenko claimed victory in a referendum that proposed restarting his 5-year term with broad new powers. It extended his term to 2001, granted him immunity from prosecution, gave him control of key political positions from judgeships to Parliament seats and the authority to declare a state of emergency at will. Russia said that all nuclear warheads from Belarus had been returned.
    (SFC, 11/26/96, p.B2)(WSJ, 12/3/96, p.A18)(WSJ, 11/26/96, p.A1)

1996        Nov 26, In Belarus supporters of President Alexander Lukashenko broke away from Parliament, setting up their own assembly.
    (AP, 11/26/02)

1996        Dec 26, A $3.5-4 billion nuclear power plant was planned to be built over the next 3 years.
    (WSJ, 12/27/96, p.A4)

1996        Belarus Pres. Lukashenko held a referendum on capital punishment and 80% of voters supported it. Executions were done Soviet-style, with a bullet in the back of the head.
    (AP, 10/13/09)
1996        Vesna, a Belarus human rights group, began providing legal assistance to thousands of Belarusians who were fined, arrested or imprisoned for criticizing President Alexander Lukashenko's authoritarian policies.
    (AP, 8/5/11)

1997        Mar 23, American diplomat Serge Alexandrov, first secretary at the US embassy in Minsk, was ordered to leave the country for participating in an anti-government march. The Foreign Ministry accused him of being a CIA agent.
    (SFC, 3/25/97, p.A14)

1997        Mar 26, Belarus Pres. Lukashenko announced the revival of the Soviet tradition of “subbotniks,” weekend unpaid mandatory labor.
    (SFC, 3/27/97, p.A15)

1997        May 1, The government imposed a $3 million tax fine on the Soros Foundation for alleged currency exchange violations. Soros called it a blatant attempt to suppress the independent sector in Belarus.
    (SFC, 5/2/97, p.A16)

1997        May 23, Russia and Belarus signed a union charter for economic, military and political cooperation.
    (SFC, 5/24/97, p.A8)

1997        Jul 27, In Belarus some 5-7 thousand marchers rallied to condemn Pres. Lukashenko. Within hours activists were detained by the government.
    (SFC, 7/28/97, p.A3)

1997        Aug 21, The Kremlin demanded the release of journalists of ORT TV. They had been jailed in Belarus for allegedly trying to cross the border illegally into Lithuania. The journalists had made negative reports on Pres. Lukashenko.
    (SFC, 8/22/97, p.A15)

1997        Sep 3, Belarus tax officials emptied the bank account of the Soros foundation and forced the it to close down.
    (SFC, 9/4/97, p.A12)
 
1997        Oct 8, Pavel Sheremet, a TV journalist held for illegally crossing into Lithuania, was released after a 2-month detention. He still faced charges and was not allowed to leave Minsk.
    (SFC, 10/9/97, p.C3)

1997        Inflation in Belarus for the year ranged around 63%. The government forced all private companies to reregister their licenses and didn’t allow many of them to stay in business. Of an estimated 212,504 private companies and individual businesses, 123,869 closed up in 1997. Cheap credit and privileged trade access to Russia kept the  “Lukanomics” economy growing at a 10% rate, but the growth was not expected to be sustainable.
    (WSJ, 2/23/98, p.A19)

1998        Mar, The Belarus currency plunged heavily this month. Lukashenko ordered the arrest of some 30 government officials that he held responsible and marshaled the KGB to enforce various new decrees in an attempt to impose order on the markets.
    (WSJ, 3/30/98, p.A15)

1998        Jun 10, Belarus delayed a deadline for foreign diplomats to leave their residences to permit repairs following protests by diplomats.
    (WSJ, 6/10/98, p.A1)

1998        Jun 20, Ambassadors of the EU nations announced that they would leave Belarus to protest a government move barring them from their homes.
    (SFEC, 6/21/98, p.A17)

1998        Jul 13, Ten nations joined the EU in locking out the leaders of Belarus for the eviction of foreign ambassadors.
    (SFC, 7/14/98, p.A9)

1998        Nov 25, From Belarus it was reported that food rationing had been imposed for milk, meat and other goods due to shortages.
    (SFC, 11/26/98, p.B5)

1998        Dec 25, Belarus Pres. Lukashenko and Russian Pres. Boris Yeltsin declared an agreement to begin unifying their currencies and economies next year.
    (SFC, 12/26/98, p.A1)

1998        Dec 27, Belarus monthly income was reported to be down to an average $40 per month with sever inflation and product shortages.
    (SFEC, 12/27/98, p.A21)

1998        Belarus Pres. Lukashenko shut down Svaboda, the only independent newspaper in the country.
    (SFEC, 12/27/98, p.B13)

1999        Mar, Belarus police arrested former Premier Mikhail Chigir after he registered to run in opposition sponsored unofficial presidential elections. He was released in November but still faced a trial on corruption charges.
    (SFC, 12/1/99, p.C3)

1999        Apr 5, Gennady Karpenko, Belarus opposition leader and former deputy speaker of the 1996 disbanded parliament, died at age 49.
    (SFC, 4/8/99, p.C5)

1999        May 16, In Belarus an unofficial presidential election drew to a close after 10 days of door-to-door vote getting. One of the 2 candidates withdrew and the other was in prison and the affair was denounced by Pres. Lukashenko. Organizers pronounced the election invalid on May 19, claiming harassment, and called for another vote in 3 months.
    (SFC, 5/17/99, p.A10)(SFC, 5/21/99, p.D2)

1999        May 30, In Belarus at least 54 people, mostly teen-age girls, were killed in a stampede near an underground passageway in Minsk as they left a concert by a local beer company due to a sudden heavy rain.
    (SFC, 5/31/99, p.A10)

1999        Jul 20, The term of Belarus Pres. Lukashenko expired. He had extended his term to 2002 but the US said it would no longer recognize him.
    (WSJ, 7/22/99, p.A1)

1999        Jul 22, In Minsk, Belarus, police broke up a march by some 5,000 people against Pres. Lukashenko.
    (WSJ, 7/23/99, p.A1)

1999        Sep, In Belarus Lukashenko opponents, Viktor Gonchar and Anatoly Krasovsky, were shot to death. In 2001 2 KGB agents spoke on videotape and admitted the murders.
    (SFC, 8/28/01, p.A6)

1999        Oct 2, In Vitebsk, Belarus, it was reported that the remains of 375 people were found during excavation work at the abandoned Assumption Cathedral. The cathedral had served as a Nazi prison during WW II.
    (SFC, 10/2/99, p.A13)

1999        Dec 8, Russia and Belarus signed a 3rd union agreement. It proposed combining currencies by 2005 and the introduction of a joint tax system in 2001.
    (SFC, 12/9/99, p.C4)

2000        Mar 25, Thousands of people demonstrated in Minsk against the rule of Pres. Lukashenko and clashed with police.
    (SFC, 3/27/00, p.A13)

2000        Oct 15, Belarus held Parliamentary elections. Authorities hand-picked most candidates and those with known anti-Lukoshenko views were barred from running. Average salary in Belarus was $50 per month. An opposition call for a boycott failed due to rural government support.
    (SFEC, 10/15/00, p.A22)(SFC, 10/16/00, p.F8)

2001        Jul 19, It was reported that 2 Belarussian defectors alleged that the Lukashenko regime ran a death squad that had killed as many as 30 foes.
    (WSJ, 7/19/01, p.A1)

2001        Aug 27, In Belarus a videotape was released that showed 2 men saying they were members of the Belarus KGB and had shot to death 2 Lukashenko opponents in Sep., 1999.
    (SFC, 8/28/01, p.A6)

2001        Sep 9, Belarus held Presidential elections. Pres. Lukashenko won with 75.6% of the vote. There were widespread allegations of fraud and abuse. Opposition leader Vladimir Goncharik won 15.4%.
    (SSFC, 9/2/01, p.A14)(SFC, 9/10/01, p.B1)(SFC, 9/11/01, p.B3)

2002        Oct 30, Belarus authorities reported the discovery of a mass grave on a military base at Slutsk with the remains of up to 12,000 people killed during World War II. Some 800,000 Jew of Belarus were killed by Nazis.
    (AP, 10/31/02)

2002        Dec 2, Belarus said its ambassador to Japan has refused an order to return to the ex-Soviet state in what the envoy's friends said could be an attempt to stage a "Cold War-style" defection.
    (Reuters, 12/2/02)

2003        Jan 20, The leaders of Russia and Belarus reaffirmed their commitment to closer integration under a union treaty that has developed slowly since it was created nearly seven years ago.
    (AP, 1/20/03)

2003        Apr 14, The US followed the lead of 14 European countries and lifted a travel ban imposed last November on the president and seven top ministers of Belarus over alleged human rights violations in the former Soviet republic.
    (AP, 4/15/03)

2003        Jun 22, Vasil Bykov (79), one of the best-known and most talented writers in Belarus and a harsh critic of its authoritarian leader, died. His books about World War II — including "Sign of Misfortune," "Alpine Ballad" and "Sotnikov" were required reading for all Belarusian school children.
    (AP, 6/23/03)

2003        Jul 30, In Paris, France, 2 men from Belarus were arrested for running Regpay, an Internet-based child porn trade. A 3rd partner was arrested 2 days later in Spain. Agents later arrested 330 Regpay subscribers in the US.
    (WSJ, 1/17/06, p.A6)

2003        Oct 12, In  Belarus a patient at a mental hospital set fire to the building, killing 30 people and injuring 31.
    (AP, 10/12/03)

2004        Feb 16, In Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko ordered the Justice Ministry to strengthen control over political parties, community organizations and unions.
    (AP, 2/16/04)

2004        Jul 27, Belarus ordered a leading independent university closed, citing licensing problems, a week after a march against Lukashenko’s rule.
    (WSJ, 7/28/04, p.A1)

2004        Sep 19, Belarus barred dozens of opposition candidates from running in the Oct 17 legislative elections.
    (WSJ, 9/20/04, p.A1)

2004        Oct 17, Belarus voters went to the polls to decide whether to abolish presidential term limits and allow the authoritarian president to run for a third term in 2006. Opposition leaders accused the government of arresting exit-poll takers and turning away election observers.
    (AP, 10/17/04)

2004        Oct 18, In Belarus Elections Chairwoman Lidiya Ermoshina announced that the preliminary tally of all the ballots showed that more than 77 percent of registered voters approved dropping the two-term limit and that nationwide turnout was nearly 90 percent. The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe said that the elections "fell significantly short" of democratic norms. Thousands of people took to the streets to protest the results.
    (AP, 10/18/04)(SFC, 10/19/04, p.A6)

2004        Dec 30, Mikhail Marinich, Belarus opposition figure and former economic affairs minister, was sentenced to 5 years in prison for stealing computers owned by the US Embassy. The embassy did not report any thefts and the charges were considered spurious.
    (SFC, 12/31/04, p.A3)

2005        Mar 25, Some 1000 Belarusian demonstrators tried to rally outside the office of authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko to demand his ouster, but they were beaten back by riot police swinging truncheons.
    (AP, 3/25/05)

2005        May 31, A Belarus court sentenced 2 opposition leaders to 3 years of compulsory labor for organizing a 2004 anti-Lukashenko demonstration.
    (WSJ, 6/1/05, p.A1)

2005        Aug 2, Belarusian police arrested two leaders of an ethnic Polish cultural group after seizing the group's headquarters, raising already heightened tensions between the neighboring countries.
    (AP, 8/2/05)

2005        Oct 2, The fragmented political opposition in Belarus chose Alexander Milinkevich (58), a former US-educated physicist, to challenge President Alexander Lukashenko in next year's presidential election.
    (AP, 10/2/05)

2005        Oct, In Belarus Veronika Cherkasova (44), who had worked for independent media outlets for the past 15 years, was killed in her home in Minsk. Sergei Ivanov, a top prosecutor in charge of the investigation, decided in December to suspend an inquiry "owing to the absence of individuals who can be brought to justice."
    (AP, 12/28/05)f

2005        Nov 23, Poland's two leading newspapers blacked out large sections of their front pages in an eye-catching protest against media repression in neighboring Belarus.
    (AP, 11/23/05)

2005        Nov, The opposition in Belarus invited citizens to mark the 16th of every month by turning off their lights and placing a candle in the window. They also adopted denim as their color following the September beating of activist Mikita Sasim, who made a flag of his denim shirt before being beaten unconscious by police.
    (Econ, 11/19/05, p.56)

2005        Dec 2, Belarus' lower house of parliament passed legislation that would make it a crime to discredit the state, be a member of the political opposition or an advocate for human rights.
    (AP, 12/02/05)

2005        Dec 14, Belarusian lawmakers passed legislation that would crack down on Internet dating and online spouse searches in the latest in a series of stringent government controls backed by authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko.
    (AP, 12/14/05)

2005        Dec 16, Belarus' parliament set March 19 as the date for presidential elections, giving the opposition just a week to register a candidate to challenge authoritarian incumbent Alexander Lukashenko.
    (AP, 12/16/05)

2006        Mar 2, Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko defiantly told his Western critics to stay out of his country's affairs, while an opposition rival for the presidency was beaten by security forces and detained.
    (AP, 3/2/06)

2006        Mar 10, Belarus told a group of EU legislators who were planning to monitor the upcoming presidential vote to stay home, labeling them troublemakers.
    (WSJ, 3/11/06, p.A1)

2006        Mar 14, Belarus authorities arrested more opposition activists as Belarusians cast early ballots for the March 19 presidential election.
    (AP, 3/14/06)

2006        Mar 19, In Belarus exit poll results gave hard-line incumbent Alexander Lukashenko an overwhelming lead in the presidential vote. The opposition candidate said he would not recognize the results. In 2009 Lukashenko said in an interview that he took 93% of the vote in the polls, but had the number reduced for "psychological" reasons.
    (AP, 3/19/06)(AFP, 8/27/09)

2006        Mar 20, European observers said that Belarus' presidential election did not meet international standards for a free and fair vote because of widespread detentions and intimidation.
    (AP, 3/20/06)

2006        Mar 23, Belarussian protestors camped out for a fifth day in central Minsk as an opposition party leader released from prison declared that President Alexander Lukashenko's regime was at a "dead-end."
    (AFP, 3/23/06)

2006        Mar 24, In Belarus police stormed the opposition tent camp in Minsk and rounded up hundreds of demonstrators who had spent a fourth night protesting President Alexander Lukashenko's victory in a disputed election. The US joined European nations in imposing sanctions on Belarus in retaliation for the crackdown on political protesters.
    (AP, 3/24/06)

2006        Mar 25, In Belarus riot police clashed with protesters in Minsk, forcing demonstrators back and hitting several with truncheons. Four explosions were heard, apparently percussion grenades set off by police.
    (AP, 3/25/06)

2006        Mar 28, Rights advocates said some 20 detained opposition supporters have gone on hunger strike to protest conditions at a Belarusian jail holding 400 opposition supporters, as authorities continued to crackdown on dissent following the disputed March 19 election.
    (AP, 3/28/06)

2006        Mar 30, Russia's natural-gas monopoly OAO Gazprom said that Belarus must pay European rates for its gas, an apparent bargaining ploy to win control over its neighbor's gas pipeline system and one that could stir trouble between the allies.
    (AP, 3/30/06)

2006        Apr 8, Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko has been sworn in for a third five-year term and used the occasion to lash out at his foreign critics.
    (AP, 4/8/06)

2006        Apr 10, The EU barred Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko and dozens of his senior officials from entering any bloc countries to protest his re-election last month in a vote that international observers said was rigged.
    (AP, 4/10/06)

2006        Apr 21, Russia began delivering advanced anti-aircraft missiles to Belarus.
    (AP, 4/22/06)

2006        May 1, In Belarus more than 1,000 protesters carrying banned flags marched through Minsk to demand the release of jailed opposition leaders who had pledged to work for the removal of President Alexander Lukashenko.
    (AP, 5/1/06)

2006        May 25, In Belarus the Justice Ministry said it had asked a court to close down one of the country's leading human rights groups, the Belarusian Helsinki Committee.
    (AP, 5/25/06)

2006        May 26, In Belarus a monument to Soviet secret police founder Felix Dzerzhinsky was unveiled in Minsk, provoking protests from human rights defenders and opposition politicians.
    (AP, 5/26/06)

2006        May 29, A Belarus court sentenced Sergei Lyashkevich, an opposition campaign official, to five months in prison after convicting him of training and paying people to riot. Lyashkevich had directed opposition candidate Alexander Milinkevich's campaign office in Shchuchin.
    (AP, 5/29/06)

2006        Jul 13, In Belarus Alexander Kozulin (50), an opposition leader, was convicted of organizing an unauthorized rally against the disputed election of Pres. Lukashenko and sentenced to 5 1/2 years in jail.
    (AP, 7/13/06)

2006        Jul 24, In Belarus leftist Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez exchanged declarations of solidarity with the authoritarian leader of isolated Belarus, who shares his anti-US views. During the talks with Lukashenko, the two sides signed seven agreements on military-technical cooperation, economic and other ties as well as a declaration pledging a strategic partnership. Bilateral trade was just under $16 million in 2005.
    (AP, 7/24/06)

2006        Oct 26, Belarusian opposition leader Alexander Milinkevich was awarded the Sakharov Prize by the EU Parliament for his fight for democracy in the former Soviet republic.
    (AP, 10/26/06)

2006        Nov 23, Belarusian police detained opposition leader Alexander Milinkevich during a visit to a province where he was gathering signatures in support of candidates for local elections.
    (AP, 11/23/06)

2006        Nov 28, Belarus hosted a summit of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). The participants fail to agree on any significant multilateral initiative and the summit itself was sullied by a media scandal.
    (www.isn.ethz.ch/news/sw/details.cfm?ID=16984)
   
2006        Dec 8, The wife of Alexander Kozulin, a Belarusian opposition leader imprisoned since last spring's protests, said her husband has entered the 50th day of a hunger strike and is in critical condition.
    (AP, 12/8/06)

2006        Dec 12, In Belarus Alexander Kozulin, a jailed former opposition presidential candidate, ended a hunger strike after refusing food for 54 days.
    (AP, 12/12/06)

2006        Dec 26, Talks between Belarus and the Russian state gas monopoly on Russia's demand for a price increase brought no resolution and a top company official said Belarus could face a New Year's gas cutoff. Gazprom said it failed to gain assent to double gas prices, but added that any cutoff would no affect EU nations.
    (AP, 12/26/06)(WSJ, 12/27/06, p.A1)

2006        Dec 27, Belarus issued an implicit threat that it could stop Russian gas deliveries through its pipelines to western Europe unless Russia's gas monopoly Gazprom relented on demands Minsk pay steep price increases in 2007.
    (AP, 12/27/06)

2006        Dec 31, Belarus agreed to a more than doubling of the price it pays for Russian gas, signing what it called an "unfortunate" deal two minutes before a midnight New Year's Eve deadline expired.
    (AFP, 1/1/07)

2007        Jan 3, Belarus vowed to charge fees for transshipped oil.
    (WSJ, 1/4/07, p.A1)

2007        Jan 6, Belarus stepped up its dispute with Russia over energy sales by announcing Saturday it has started a customs case against Transneft, Russia's pipeline operator.
    (AP, 1/6/07)

2007        Jan 7, Russia stopped pumping oil into  a pipeline network that crossed Belarus. The line delivered 12.5% of the EU’s oil needs.
    (Econ, 1/13/07, p.44)

2007        Jan 8, A senior Russian official said that Russia has been forced to stop delivering oil to Europe via Belarus after disruptions to the flow of exports it blamed on Minsk.
    (AP, 1/8/07)

2007        Jan 10, Belarus lifted a duty it had imposed on Russian fuel transiting the country.
    (SFC, 1/11/07, p.A7)

2007        Jan 11, Oil flowed again through the main pipeline from Russia to Europe after Moscow and Belarus agreed to settle a dispute that has hurt Russia's reputation as an energy supplier.
    (AP, 1/11/07)

2007        Jan 12, Russia reportedly agreed to slash the duty on oil exports to Belarus by 70% and Belarus will share with Moscow a substantial amount of profits from the refined oil products it sells to Europe.
    (AP, 1/12/07)

2007        Jan 14, Belarus held local elections. Government loyalists appeared to sweep the local elections, as President Alexander Lukashenko retained a firm grip over the former Soviet nation. Belarus opposition and human rights activists denounced the vote as rigged, and the United States and the European Union said it failed to meet democratic standards.
    (AP, 1/15/07)

2007        Mar 1, Belarus dismissed new financial sanctions imposed by the United States as politically senseless. President Alexander Lukashenko said his country was ready to normalize relations with Washington.
    (AP, 3/1/07)

2007        Mar 23, In Somalia a cargo plane was shot down by a missile during takeoff died. Ten of the crew died in the crash. Rescuers found a wounded crew member and took him to a Mogadishu hospital where he died while being treated. All crew members were either Ukrainian or Belarussian. Egi Azarian, acting head of Belarus-based Transaviaexport, confirmed that the company's plane was shot down.
    (AP, 3/24/07)

2007        Mar 25, In Belarus security forces prevented up to 1,500 opponents of President Alexander Lukashenko from protesting in the same square where unprecedented rallies shook the former Soviet republic a year ago.
    (AFP, 3/25/07)

2007        Apr 25, A top US diplomat warned of new sanctions against Belarus if authorities refuse to release what he said were political prisoners, and dropping charges against others.
    (AP, 4/25/07)

2007        May 21, The presidents of Belarus and Iran sought to cement ties that the Belarusian leader called "a strategic partnership." Belarus will develop an oil field in Iran under an agreement announced by President Alexander Lukashenko during a visit by Pres. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
    (AP, 5/21/07)

2007        May 23, Belarus lawmakers backed legislation stripping hundreds of thousands of disabled and retired people and students of social benefits and other state payments.
    (AP, 5/23/07)

2007        Jun 29, In Minsk Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez called for a strategic partnership with Belarus, calling his counterpart a "brother-in-arms" and lamenting the pressure he said the US was putting on Minsk and Caracas.
    (AP, 6/29/07)

2007        Aug 1, Russia's state-controlled gas monopoly said that it will reduce natural gas supplies to Belarus by 45 percent as of Aug 3 after Minsk failed to pay in full for previous gas shipments.
    (AP, 8/1/07)

2007        Dec 8, Venezuela’s Pres. Hugo Chavez promised to supply the oil needs of Belarus for years to come and dismissed Western accusations that Pres. Alexander Lukashenko is a dictator. Chavez presented Lukashenko with a medal, and they signed an agreement pledging military cooperation.
    (AP, 12/9/07)

2007        Dec 14, The leaders Belarus and Russia pledged closer cooperation on military, economic and foreign policy but gave no indication that the ex-Soviet neighbors were moving closer to a long-discussed full merger.
    (AP, 12/14/07)

2007        Dec 15, Russia's state-controlled gas monopoly said Belarus will pay nearly 20 percent more for Russian gas beginning next year.
    (AP, 12/15/07)

2008        Jan 10, In Belarus police broke up a rally of 2,000 entrepreneurs protesting moves by the authoritarian government to increase the burden on private business. The demonstrators opposed new legislation that would force them to reregister their ventures and double the amount of taxes they have to pay.
    (AP, 1/10/08)

2008        Jan 21, Police in ex-Soviet Belarus dispersed a protest by about 2,000 entrepreneurs denouncing President Alexander Lukashenko's decree that places restrictions on hiring staff. Businessmen said the new regulations deny them the right to hire workers outside their immediate families or obliges them to re-register and be subject to higher taxes.
    (AP, 1/21/08)

2008        Mar 7, The Belarusian Foreign Ministry said it has demanded that the US ambassador leave the country and recalled its ambassador in the US over Washington's economic sanctions against the ex-Soviet nation.
    (AP, 3/7/08)

2008        Mar 25, Belarus said it had uncovered a spy ring working for Washington, deepening a diplomatic and human rights row between the countries. Police beat demonstrators with truncheons and hauled them into waiting trucks as thousands of opposition protesters turned out in defiance of a government ban on the anniversary of the 1918 short-lived declaration of independence.
    (AP, 3/25/08)

2008        May 3, An embassy representative said 11 US diplomats have left Belarus after a row with the tightly controlled former Soviet state over human rights and sanctions.
    (AP, 5/3/08)

2008        Jun 25, Dozens of Belarusian news Web sites filled their pages with grim black banners to protest a new media law that will severely restrict the last source of independent information in the repressive ex-Soviet state.
    (AP, 6/26/08)

2008        Jul 2, President Alexander Lukashenko said he acceded to Western and opposition demands for greater democracy ahead of elections.
    (WSJ, 7/3/08, p.A1)

2008        Jul 4, In Belarus about 50 people were wounded by a home-made bomb that sprayed nuts and bolts into a crowd at an open-air concert in Minsk attended by long-time ruler President Alexander Lukashenko.
    (Reuters, 7/4/08)

2008        Jul 23, Venezuela signed over three more oil fields to a joint venture with Belarus, with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez declaring that the two nations were strongly united in their resistance to "US imperialism" and Washington's "lackeys."
    (AP, 7/23/08)

2008        Aug 11, In Belarus Emmanuel Zeltser, an American lawyer, was sentenced to 3 years in prison after being convicted at a closed trial for commercial espionage and using false documents. He is an expert on organized crime and money laundering. The US raised protests over his detention and concerns about his health in custody. Zeltser (55) was released on June 30, 2009, following a presidential pardon.
    (AP, 8/12/08)(AP, 7/1/09)

2008        Aug 16, Jailed Belarusian opposition leader Alexander Kozulin, considered in the West to be the ex-Soviet state's most prominent political prisoner, was released. Kozulin was one of two opposition candidates to run against Lukashenko in a 2006 election and was jailed for 5 1/2 years for helping stage mass protests against the official result declaring the president the winner by a landslide.
    (Reuters, 8/16/08)

2008        Sep 20, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said he will cease all dialogue with Western countries if they fail to recognize the ex-Soviet state's parliamentary election.
    (AP, 9/20/08)

2008        Sep 28, Belarussians voted in parliamentary elections that could determine whether President Alexander Lukashenko's regime warms to the West or moves deeper into Russia's orbit. Loyalists of Lukashenko won every seat in the parliamentary polls that observers said failed Western standards and had the opposition crying foul.
    (AFP, 9/28/08)(AP, 9/29/08)

2008        Sep 29, Opposition activists in Belarus called for the US and EU not to recognize the results of parliamentary elections swept by supporters of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, who had promised the vote would meet international standards.
    (AP, 9/29/08)

2008        Oct 13, The EU temporarily lifted a travel ban on the president of Belarus, a country regarded as Europe's last dictatorship, as relations with the country start to thaw.
    (AP, 10/13/08)

2008        Nov 2, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko greeted visiting Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi and said he hopes to boost ties between their countries.
    (AP, 11/2/08)

2008        Dec 15, In Belarus nearly 2,000 entrepreneurs rallied Minsk, decrying new regulations that they said are destroying small business in the ex-Soviet republic. New regulations, which take effect Jan 1, included doubling their taxes and forcing them to reregister their businesses.
    (AP, 12/15/08)

2008        Dec 22, Belarus' president sought $3 billion in economic aid from Russia to help its struggling economy, but Moscow demanded in return that Belarus recognize two breakaway Georgian regions as independent nations.
    (AP, 12/22/08)

2009        Jan 1, The IMF announced plans to lend Belarus $2.5 billion to help the country cope with the global economic crises.
    (WSJ, 1/2/09, p.A5)

2009        Feb 3, The Kremlin said Russia and Belarus will create a new military system to monitor and defend their air space.
    (WSJ, 2/4/08, p.A10)

2009        Feb 4, Russia sought to bolster its security alliance with six other ex-Soviet nations (Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan) by forming a joint rapid reaction force in a continuing effort to curb US influence in energy-rich Central Asia.
    (AP, 2/4/09)

2009        Mar 15, Belarus' authoritarian Pres. Lukashenko allowed a banned organization of ethnic Poles to meet for the first time in four years, sending a tentative signal of his willingness to relax his tight hold in exchange for warmer ties with the West. The Union of Poles has been banned since riot police were sent in to take over its headquarters in March 2005.
    (AP, 3/15/09)

2009        Mar 26, The UN's top human-rights body approved a proposal by Muslims nations urging passage of laws around the world to protect religion from criticism. The resolution was sponsored by Pakistan, Belarus and Venezuela.
    (AP, 3/26/09)(Econ, 4/4/09, p.17)

2009        Apr 27, Belarus' authoritarian Pres. Lukashenko met with Pope Benedict XVI on his first trip to Western Europe since the European Union lifted a travel ban imposed in 1999 over his dismal human rights record. The EU lifted the ban to allow Lukashenko to attend an East-West summit in Prague, Czech Republic, in May.
    (www.contracostatimes.com/nationandworld/ci_12237339)

2009        May 7, The European Union extended its hand to former Soviet republics, holding a summit to draw them closer into the EU orbit despite Russia's deep misgivings. Presidents, premiers and their deputies from 33 nations signed an agreement meant to extend the EU's political and economic ties. The six ex-Soviet republics to whom the “eastern partnership” would apply are Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine.
    (AP, 5/7/09)(Econ, 1/10/15, p.49)

2009        May 28, Russian PM Vladimir Putin met Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko in Minsk amid talk of massive loans to Minsk, just days after the Belarussian strongman made a furious attack on his Moscow ally.
    (AFP, 5/28/09)

2009        Jun 14, Belarus boycotted a Moscow-led security summit to protest a Russian ban on Belarusian dairy products, deepening a politically charged dispute between the two ex-Soviet neighbors. Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and the other Organization of the Collective Security Treaty (CSTO) leaders signed an agreement creating a joint rapid-reaction force that could bolster the power and prestige of the seven-nation alliance, seen largely as an ex-Soviet answer to NATO.
    (AP, 6/14/09)

2009        Jun 17, Belarus set up customs posts on its border with Russia for the first time in 14 years as a trade dispute between the two countries escalated.
    (AP, 6/17/09)

2009        Jun 29, In Belarus Vasily Yusepchuk (30), an illiterate, itinerant Gypsy worker, was sentenced to death by Brest Regional Court. He did chores for elderly women, and allegedly would sneak back at night to rob and strangle them. Lawyers insisted the case hinged exclusively on a confession that they claim was obtained through torture.
    (AP, 10/13/09)

2009         Aug, Aliaksandr Barankov (27) arrived in Ecuador after fleeing fraud and extortion charges in Belarus. He called the charges bogus, retribution for his having exposed a petroleum-smuggling ring involving senior officials of President Lukashenko's government, including relatives of the leader.
    (AP, 8/20/12)

2009        Dec 6, In Belarus men appearing to be law enforcement officers abducted four opposition activists in an attempt to scare them away from political activity in the repressive former Soviet republic. The activists were held for several hours in an imitation execution, before being released in the woods dozens of miles (km) from the capital, Minsk.
    (AP, 12/9/09)

2009        Dec 16, In Belarus the Nasha Niva independent newspaper said President Alexander Lukashenko has issued a decree to tighten state control over the Internet.
    (AFP, 12/16/09)

2010        Feb 11, Thai prosecutors said they have dropped charges against the five-man crew of an aircraft accused of smuggling weapons from North Korea, saying the men, arrested on Dec 12, might be guilty but would be deported to preserve good relations with their home countries. The decision was made after the governments of Belarus and Kazakhstan contacted the Thai Foreign Ministry and requested the crew's release so they can be investigated at home.
    (AP, 2/11/10)

2010        Mar 25, In Belarus some 2,000 opposition activists held a protest rally despite police blocks that authorities explained were part of security measures against an alleged bomb threat. March 25 has long been a traditional day of opposition demonstration, marking what they call Freedom Day, the anniversary of the 1918 declaration of the first, short-lived independent Belarusian state.
    (AP, 3/25/10)

2010        Mar 30, Amnesty International said Europe had its first year without executions in 2009. But the London-based organization said the spell was recently broken by the execution of two men in Belarus.
    (AP, 3/30/10)

2010        Apr 20, Kyrgyzstan's ousted president was in exile in Belarus, as the interim authorities controlling the Kyrgyz capital warned he would be imprisoned if he tried to return to the Central Asian country.
    (AP, 4/20/10)

2010        Jun 21, Russia started cutting most natural gas supplies to ex-Soviet neighbor Belarus over what it claims is a debt of nearly $200 million, threatening to rekindle political disputes in the region over energy policy.
    (AP, 6/21/10)

2010        Jun 22, Belarussian President Alexander Lukashenko ordered the shutdown of transit of Russian gas to Europe, escalating a new "gas war" after Moscow slashed supplies to Minsk in a debt dispute. Belarus said Gazprom owes it 217 million dollars in transit fees.
    (AFP, 6/22/10)

2010        Jun 23, Lithuania said its Russian gas supplies, which transit through Belarus, had been cut by 30 percent as a result of Russia's energy dispute with Belarus.
    (AP, 6/23/10)

2010        Jun, Stuxnet, computer malware, was first detected by VirusBlokAda, a security firm in Belarus. It was tailored for Siemens supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems commonly used to manage water supplies, oil rigs, power plants and other industrial facilities. It was able to recognize a specific facility's control network and then destroy it. The code had a technology fingerprint of the control system it was seeking and would go into action automatically when it found its target. In September German computer security researcher Ralph Langner said he suspected that Stuxnet's mark was the Bushehr nuclear facility in Iran. Unspecified problems have been blamed for a delay in getting the facility fully operational. Stuxnet used 4 main exploits, packets of computer code that allow hackers to infiltrate or gain control of computers running software with design flaws.
    (AP, 9/24/10)(Econ, 10/2/10, p.63)(Econ, 3/30/13, p.65)

2010        Jul 4, Russia’s NTV, a TV channel controlled by Gazprom, aired “Godfather,” a documentary that portrayed Belarus Pres. Lukashenka as a brutal election-rigging, opposition-repressing tyrant.
    (Econ, 7/24/10, p.53)

2010        Jul 5, Belarus signed a customs union with Russia and Kazakhstan.
    (Econ, 7/24/10, p.53)

2010        Sep 3, In Belarus the editor a popular opposition website was found dead amid an ongoing crackdown on government critics and independent media. The body of Oleg Bebenin (36) was found in his country house outside Minsk.
    (AP, 9/4/10)

2010        Oct 16, In Belarus visiting Pres. Chavez of Venezuela promised that Belarusian refineries, the backbone of the country's economy, would see no oil shortages for the next 200 years.
    (AP, 10/16/10)

2010        Dec 1, Belarus announced that it will give up its stockpile of material used to make nuclear weapons by 2012. The arrangement was announced on the sidelines of an international security meeting in the Central Asian nation of Kazakhstan by US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and her Belarussian counterpart, Sergei Martynov.
    (AP, 12/1/10)

2010        Dec 19, Belarus held elections. Authoritarian leader Alexander Lukashenko expressed confidence that he would win a fourth term. Opposition leaders and rights activists reported that more than 30 people campaigning against the president had been detained. The country's election commission declared that Lukashenko got almost 80% of the vote in a preliminary count, handing him a fourth term in office.
    (AP, 12/19/10)(AP, 12/20/10)

2010        Dec 20, International observers and Western governments accused Belarus' strongman leader of using fraud and violence to remain in power after more than 16 years of repressive rule, saying that Pres. Lukashenko's re-election had been seriously flawed.
    (AP, 12/20/10)

2010        Dec 21, In Belarus Grigory Kostusyev, a presidential candidate arrested after weekend elections, said the KGB tried to pressure him into renouncing his opposition to the country's authoritarian regime.
    (AP, 12/21/10)

2010        Dec 22, A rights group said Belarus has opened criminal probes against 18 leading opposition figures over involvement in post-election riots that could see them jailed for up to 15 years. Belarus has said it arrested over 600 people in the wake of recent protests against authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko's re-election.
    (AFP, 12/22/10)

2010        Dec 23, The EU and the US jointly threatened to review ties with Belarus following an opposition crackdown after elections that kept President Alexander Lukashenko in power.
    (AFP, 12/23/10)

2010        Dec 24, Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko was officially declared the winner of a fourth term in office in a vote that both his challengers and international monitors say was tainted by fraud.
    (AP, 12/24/10)

2010        Dec 28, Belarus Pres. Lukashenko appointed Mikhail Myasnikovich (60), the official head of the Belarussian Academy of Sciences, as the new prime minister.
    (SFC, 12/29/10, p.A2)

2010        Dec 29, Belarus lawyers said the seven presidential candidates who were arrested after this month's election have been formally charged with organizing a mass public disturbance and face up to 15 years in prison.
    (AP, 12/30/10)

2010        Dec 30, Reporters Without Borders said that since Dec. 25, the Belarus KGB had searched the offices of 3 news outlets and an opposition party, the homes of 2 journalists, 2 human rights activists, 2 former presidential candidates and 4 of their advisers. The homes of 2 more journalists were searched the next day.
    (AP, 12/31/10)

2010        Dec 31, Belarus declared that Europe's top rights watchdog would no longer be able to work in the country, after the OSCE condemned the conduct of this month's presidential election.
    (AP, 12/31/10)

2010        The population of Belarus was about 10 million.
    (Econ, 12/4/10, p.66)

2011        Jan 5, A lawyer for the Belarus Helsinki Committee said police had seized computers at its office and taken its director in for questioning.
    (AP, 1/5/11)

2011        Jan 14, In Belarus state-controlled media accused the intelligence services of Germany and Poland of trying to organize a coup during last month's presidential election.
    (Reuters, 1/14/11)

2011        Jan 21, Belarus Pres. Lukashenko (56) warned that no dissent will be tolerated as he took the oath of office for a fourth time in a ceremony that was boycotted by EU ambassadors.
    (AP, 1/22/11)

2011        Jan 31, The US and the EU imposed sanctions against Belarus Pres. Lukashenko and scores of other officials for a broad crackdown on the opposition following fraudulent elections last year.
    (SFC, 2/1/11, p.A2)

2011        Feb 4, US Sens. John McCain and Joseph Liberman visited Lithuania. McCain and Lieberman slammed the Belarusian regime, labeling President Alexander Lukashenko a ruthless tyrant and called on Washington to take the lead on imposing sanctions on the country.
    (AP, 2/4/11)

2011        Mar 24, The Czech Interior Ministry said Ales Mikhalevich has been given political refugee status. The Belarus political activist had been jailed and beaten after running against Alexander Lukashenko in presidential elections. Mikhalevich was released on Feb 19.
    (AP, 3/24/11)

2011        Mar 25, In Belarus police attacked hundreds of opposition activists who tried to hold an anti-government rally. March 25 has long been a traditional day of opposition rallies marking the anniversary of Belarus' short-lived declaration of independence from Russia in 1918.
    (AP, 3/26/11)

2011        Mar 29, The Obama administration slapped sanctions on a state-owned energy company in Belarus over a $500 million investment with an Iranian firm accused of contributing to Iran's suspect nuclear program.
    (AP, 3/29/11)

2011        Apr 11, In Belarus a subway bombing in Minsk left 11 dead and more than 200 wounded. 4 others died soon after. Authorities soon detained several people in what they are calling a terrorist attack. Suspects Dmitry Konovalov (25) and Vladislav Kovalyov (25) went on trial in September. On Nov 30 both men were convicted of terrorism and sentenced to death.
    (AP, 4/12/11)(AP, 4/25/11)(AP, 9/15/11)(AP, 11/30/11)

2011        Apr 13, Belarus President Lukashenko announced three suspects had confessed to the April 11 Minsk metro bombing that killed 12 as he threatened a new wave of repression against the opposition. Two more suspects were detained by the next day.
    (AFP, 4/13/11)(Reuters, 4/14/11)

2011        Apr 27, In Belarus a Minsk court found Dmitry Bondarenko guilty of organizing a rally protesting election results last December that attracted some 50,000 people. He was sentenced to two years in prison for his part in organizing the rally.
    (AP, 4/27/11)

2011        May 14, Andrei Sannikov (57), a Belarusian presidential candidate, was sentenced to five years in prison following a trial that he denounced as political punishment for challenging the nation's authoritarian ruler. On May 16 a court gave his journalist wife, Irina Khalip, a two-year suspended prison sentence for taking part in an antigovernment rally.
    (AP, 5/14/11)(AP, 5/16/11)(Econ, 5/14/11, p.66)

2011        May 28, In Belarus plainclothes officers and one in uniform burst into the office where the round-table on police reform was being held. The seven activists arrested included a Russian and three Ukrainians.
    (AP, 5/28/11)

2011        Jun 23, Belarus police released most of the 450 or so protesters they detained the previous evening at a rally against President Alexander Lukashenko in the capital Minsk. Several dozen were put on trial. The protests in Minsk, and nearly 30 other Belarusian cities, was the third such action in as many weeks.
    (Reuters, 6/23/11)(AP, 6/23/11)

2011        Jun 29, Belarusian police violently dispersed the latest peaceful rally by thousands of people protesting Lukashenko's regime and the country's worst financial crisis since the fall of the Soviet Union two decades ago.
    (AP, 6/30/11)

2011        Jul 2, The Belarus government, eager to avoid protests on the July 3 national holiday, began blocking access to the social media sites, including VKontakte, a Russian version of Facebook.
    (AP, 7/3/11)
2011        Jul 2, Russia restored power to Belarus after a 4-day cutoff due to unpaid bills.
    (SSFC, 7/3/11, p.A5)

2011        Jul 3, Belarus blocked access to Facebook, Twitter and a major Russian social networking site in an attempt to prevent opposition protests on a national holiday. Thousands of police and special forces were deployed in the center of Minsk, the capital.
    (AP, 7/3/11)

2011        Jul 6, Belarus police attacked peaceful protesters detaining hundreds in the latest series of rallies calling for the ouster of Pres. Lukashenko.
    (SFC, 7/7/11, p.A2)

2011        Aug 4, Belarus police detained Ales Belyatsky of the human rights Vesna group outside his home in the capital, Minsk, and also conducted searches in his apartment and country house, as well as the group's offices. The group criticized Lithuanian authorities for providing information on Belyatsky's activities to Belarusian police. The Lithuanian Justice Ministry said it will now cut off communication channels that were used to provide legal information to Belarus.
    (AP, 8/5/11)

2011        Aug 12, Poland's PM Donald Tusk lambasted prosecutors for giving Belarusian police confidential financial information on Ales Belyatsky, a prominent human rights activist. The information contributed to his arrest and allowed Belarusian authorities to file criminal charges against him.
    (AP, 8/12/11)

2011        Aug 16, Poland's prosecutor general announced the dismissal of two officials who played a role in giving Belarus financial data about Ales Belyatsky, a leading human rights activist, information that resulted in his arrest.
    (AP, 8/16/11)

2011        Aug 19, Belarus said it has suspended an effort to fully give up its Soviet-era stockpile of highly enriched uranium with US assistance in response to new American sanctions.
    (AP, 8/19/11)

2011        Oct 1, In Belarus Dmitry Uss, one of the seven opposition presidential candidates arrested after last year's election, was released from jail after a pardon from authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko. Two other candidates remained in prison, serving sentences of five to six years. Two others were given suspended sentences and freed nearly five months after their arrest. Another has fled the country and been given asylum in the Czech Republic. The seventh was released several days after his arrest.
    (AP, 10/2/11)

2011        Oct 8, In Belarus some 1,000 protesters rallied in Minsk to call for new presidential and parliamentary elections as the country experienced its worst financial crises since the fall of the Soviet Union.
    (SSFC, 10/9/11, p.A4)

2011        Oct 13, Belarus published new measures granting police sweeping new powers in a clampdown on opposition groups.
    (SFC, 10/14/11, p.A2)

2011        Oct 26, Russian newspaper journalist Igor Karmazin, working on a report about the opposition in Belarus, said he was deported overnight from the authoritarian ex-Soviet nation by the secret police. Lukashenko said that his government has learned the lessons of the Arab Spring uprisings and knows how to deal with protests organized through social networks.
    (AP, 10/26/11)

2011        Nov 24, Belarus' leading human rights activist, Ales Belyatsky (49), was convicted of tax evasion and sentenced to 4.5 years in prison at a trial condemned by US and European Union officials as politically motivated.
    (AP, 11/24/11)

2011        Dec 19, Belarus police arrested dozens of regime opponents who tried to stage a banned vigil in Minsk. Australian filmmaker Kitty Green (27) was detained while covering a topless protest outside the offices of the Belarussian KGB security services to mark Lukashenko's disputed re-election a year ago. Three members of the radical Femen group were also seized by KGB security agents who forced them to strip naked in a forest and threatened to torch them.
    (AFP, 12/20/11)

2012        Feb 28, The EU announced the withdrawal of its envoys from Belarus, hours after Belarus asked the head of the EU's delegation in Minsk and the Polish ambassador to leave and said it was withdrawing its own from Brussels and Warsaw. The tit-for-tat followed EU sanctions passed a day earlier on Belarus over repression of the political opposition.
    (AP, 2/29/12)

2012        Mar 17, Belarus state television reported that both Vladislav Kovalyov (26) and Dmitry Konovalov (26) had been put to death, which in Belarus is done with a shot to the back of the head. Two men were convicted of carrying out a deadly subway bombing last year in Minsk. Belarus is the only country in Europe that still puts people to death, and rights activists claim that around 400 people have been executed since the 1991 Soviet collapse.
    (AP, 3/18/12)

2012        Mar 25, In Belarus several thousand people joined an anti-government rally calling for the release of political prisoners and for European-style democracy.
    (SFC, 3/26/12, p.A2)

2012        Apr 14, Belarus pardoned Andrei Sannikov, a political prisoner and former presidential candidate. He had been convicted in 2011 of organizing mass unrest.
    (SSFC, 4/15/12, p.A5)

2012        Apr 25, European ministers began returning to Belarus. Poland, Lithuania and Sweden sent their representatives back to Minsk today. Other ambassadors will return over the next hours and days.
    (Reuters, 4/25/12)

2012        Jul 4, A Swedish ad team from Studio Total dropped hundreds of teddy bears carrying messages promoting human rights onto Belarus. On Aug 11 the ad team was summoned by Belarus' top security agency — the KGB — for violating the country's air space. On Aug 14 Studio Total instead offered to discuss the stunt directly with Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko and invited him to Sweden.
    (AP, 8/11/12)(AP, 8/14/12)

2012        Aug 8, Belarus ordered Sweden to close its embassy in Minsk by the end of the month, a move that comes only days after Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko's regime forced the Swedish ambassador out of the country.
    (AP, 8/8/12)

2012        Sep 23, Belarus held parliamentary elections without the main opposition parties, which boycotted the vote to protest the detention of political prisoners. Not a single opposition politician won a seat in the parliament in the vote. Int’l vote observers the next day condemned the elections as lacking in competition.
    (AP, 9/23/12)(AP, 9/24/12)

2012        Dec 7, Belarus Pres. Lukashenko signed a decree banning some industrial workers from leaving their jobs, in an effort to stem an expodus of workers to Russia.
    (SFC, 12/8/12, p.A2)

2013        Jan, Belarus police began going after gays, raiding their clubs and locking up clubbers overnight, and summoning gay activists for questioning in response to a decision by gay activists across the country to try to legally register their rights organization, GayBelarus.
    (AP, 2/15/13)

2013        Jun 13, Germany-based Opel said GM signed an agreement today to start building its Corsa model at facilities owned by partner Unison in Belarus.
    (AP, 6/13/13)

2013        Aug 30, Russia banned pork imports from Belarus, stepping up a diplomatic and trade war over the arrest of Uralkali's CEO, Vladislav Baumgertner, a Russian businessman, and threatening to deepen the isolation of its former Soviet ally. The dispute followed the collapse this month of a Russia-Belarus sales cartel that controlled two-fifths of the $20-billion global market for potash, an ingredient used in mineral fertilizers.
    (Reuters, 8/30/13)

2013        Sep 2, Belarus authorities issued an arrest warrant for Suleyman Kerimov (47), a Russian billionaire who co-owns the Moscow-based potash company Uralkali, as a power struggle escalated over exports of the fertilizer.
    (AP, 9/2/13)

2013        Oct 19, Belarus freed Paval Sevyarynets (36), a leading opposition politician. He had served three years forced labour for protesting against the iron-fisted rule of President Alexander Lukashenko.
    (AFP, 10/19/13)

2013        Nov 26, In Yemen unknown gunmen killed a foreign military expert and wounded his colleague in a drive-by shooting in Sanaa. The two were Belarussian citizens who were working "on private contract."
    (AP, 11/26/13)

2013        Dec 25, Russia’s Pres. Putin announced $2 billion in loans to Belarus next year following talks with Belarus Pres. Alexander Lukashenko.
    (SFC, 12/26/13, p.A2)

2014        Mar 29, German magazine Der Spiegel reported that the US National Security Agency kept more than 300 reports on Chancellor Angela Merkel in a special databank about scores of foreign heads of state. Other leaders listed in the databank include the heads of Peru, Somalia, Guatemala, Colombia and Belarus.
    (AP, 3/29/14)

2014        May 29, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a deal creating an economic union with ex-Soviet states Belarus and Kazakhstan.
    (AFP, 5/29/14)

2014        Jun 21, Belarus released Ales Bialiatski (51), the leader of the Vyasna rights group, nearly three years into his prison sentence and 20 months ahead of schedule.
    (AP, 6/21/14)

2014        Aug 26, In Belarus Russian President Vladimir Putin met with Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, urged him not to escalate an offensive against pro-Moscow rebels, and threatened economic retaliation for signing a trade accord with the EU. Poroshenko replied by demanding a halt to arms shipments from Russia to the separatist fighters.
    (Reuters, 8/26/14)

2014        Sep 1, In Belarus pro-Russian rebels softened their demand for full independence, saying they would respect Ukraine's sovereignty in exchange for autonomy — a shift that reflects Moscow's desire to strike a deal at a new round of peace talks.
    (AP, 9/1/14)

2014        Sep 5, In Ukraine fighting raged between government forces and pro-Russian rebels just east of the strategic port of Mariupol despite the start of talks between envoys from Ukraine and Russia in Minsk on a ceasefire and a peace plan. Ukraine and pro-Russian rebels agreed to a ceasefire.
    (Reuters, 9/5/14)

2014        Nov 25, In Belarus Alexander Alesin, a military analyst for a well-known weekly newspaper, went missing since when he was reportedly snatched in a cafe in Minsk by unknown men. On Dec 8 police admitted holding him in jail.
    (AP, 12/8/14)

2014        Dec 19, Belarus imposed a 30 percent fee on currency exchange transactions in an effort to contain panic that has spilled over from neighboring Russia.
    (AP, 12/19/14)

2014        Dec 23, Russia and four other ex-Soviet nations completed the creation of a new economic alliance intended to bolster their integration. The Eurasian Economic Union, which includes Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Armenia and Kyrgyzstan, comes to existence on Jan 1. Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko cracked the ceremonial veneer of the meeting by launching a harsh attack on Moscow for damaging Belarus' economic interests with moves to restrict its exports to Russia.
    (AP, 12/23/14)

2014        Dec 24, In Belarus peace talk began aimed at reaching a stable cease-fire in Ukraine between its government forces and pro-Russian armed groups. Talks ended after over five hours with no indication of progress.
    (AP, 12/24/14)(SFC, 12/25/14, p.A5)

2015        Jan 2, The Eurasian Economic Union, a trade bloc of former Soviet states, expanded to four nations when Armenia formally joined, a day after the union between Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan began.
    (AP, 1/2/15)

2015        Jan 31, Ukrainian former president Leonid Kuchma, a Russian diplomat and an Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) official met at a state residence in the Belarussian capital Minsk for a new round of peace talks.
    (Reuters, 1/31/15)

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