February 24 – March 1, 2020
Belarus-West relations

Belarusian Parliament has been unable to build working relations with the European Parliament

The situation got worse
Belarusian Parliament has been unable to build working relations with the European Parliament

By Dzianis Melyantsou

During the working visit of European parliamentarians to Minsk, their meeting with Belarusian MPs has been disrupted. This has once again demonstrated the complexity of the inter-parliamentary dialogue with the European Union.

Despite the normalization process between Minsk and Brussels and successful dialogue with other EU institutions, communication with the European Parliament has been most troublesome. Usually, MEPs take a tougher stance on what is happening in Belarus and have not recognized the Belarusian parliament as a democratically elected body. Nevertheless, following the general trend towards normalization, MEPs have also been looking for contacts with their Belarusian colleagues, however, refrained from making such contacts official.

Apparently, this was the reason behind the disruption of the meeting with Belarusian MPs in Minsk initiated by European deputies. Belarus had proposed to hold the meeting between MEPs and Belarusian MPs at the Government House, the HQ for both, the House of Representatives of the Belarusian Parliament and the Councils of Ministers. MEPs had agreed to a meeting at a neutral territory, which they thought the Government House was. As a result, the MEPs delegation canceled the meeting literally at the last moment, which prompted a negative response from Belarus.

The situation with MEPs has demonstrated, on the one hand, the lack of communication and trust in inter-parliamentary cooperation, and, on the other, reflected the special attitude of the European Parliament. Given that the first official meeting between MEPs and Belarusian MPs took place in 2017 at the House of Representatives, the current composition of the Belarusian parliament must be raising more concerns among MEPs than the previous one.

You have been successfully subscribed

Subscribe to our newsletter

Once a week, in coordination with a group of prominent Belarusian analysts, we provide analytical commentaries on the most topical and relevant issues, including the behind-the-scenes processes occurring in Belarus. These commentaries are available in Belarusian, Russian, and English.

Situation in Belarus

July 8 – July 14
View all

Subscribe to us

Read more