Trading off sovereignty. The outcome of Belarus’s integration with Russia in the security and defence field

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Series Details No.107 (25.04.13)
Publication Date April 2013
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Although the Republic of Belarus is constitutionally designated as a neutral country, it is in fact closely connected with Russia’s own security and defence architecture. Within the Union State of Belarus and Russia, the armed forces are integrated to an extent unequalled in the world.

A legacy of the Soviet division of labour, the Belarusian defence industry complex remains structurally dependent on Russia, which is its main raw material provider, outlet for exports and intermediary on world markets. Bilateral military cooperation also builds on the perception of common threats and partly shared security interests.

Hence it unfolds regardless of the disputes that sporadically sour relations between Minsk and Moscow, standing out as the main achievement of the Union State – if not the only one.

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