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Formation and development of political parties in the Republic of Belaruinss

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Formation and development of political parties in the Republic of
Belarus

The formation of a multiparty system in Belarus, as in other former
Soviet republics, was due to several factors: the crisis of economic and
political system of Soviet society, the collapse of the Soviet Union and
the fall in prestige of the CPSU, reducing the influence of communist
ideology, belief in the unsuitability of a one-party system,
enhancement, especially in among intellectuals, social democratic and
liberal ideas, proclaiming the sovereignty of the Republic of Belarus
and discussions about the choice of paths of development.

In fact, the beginning of the formation of political parties in Belarus
associated with the emergence and formation in 1986-1987. kinds of
discussion clubs and informal organizations ( “talaq,” Legacy “,”
Tuteishya “,” Martyralog Belarus “, etc.).

In October 1988 on the basis of informal associations was created
orgkomit Belarusian Popular Front (BPF) for the restructuring of the
“Revival”, the constituent assembly which was held in June 1989 in
Vilnius. After Congress II (March 1991, Minsk), Belarusian Popular Front
was transformed into a party with a vertical organizational structure,
individual membership, the payment of contributions to the formation of
their cells in the labor collectives.

In terms of social upheaval the early 1990’s., Complex socio-economic
processes, confrontation of power and opposition forces to form
political parties of various ideological directions, formed a multiparty
system. In 1991, the republic actually existed several parties,
including the Communist Party of Belarus and stood in opposition to it.

In August 1991, after the failed coup GKChP Supreme Council of the
Republic of Belarus has suspended the activities of the Communist Party
of Belarus. In December 1991, was established the Belarusian Communist
Party (BCP) was incorporated in May 1992 In February 1993, Parliament
reversed its decision to suspend the activities of CPB, after which the
republic there were two Communist parties.

An important role in shaping the party system in the country played a
presidential election in July 1994, and the Law “On political parties”,
adopted by the Supreme Soviet of Belarus in October 1994, the Law for
the first time in the history of the Belarusian legislation was laid
down procedure for the formation and activities of political parties .
Based on the Law of the minimum number of members required to register a
political party, was increased from 100 to 500 people. After the law “On
political parties” (1994) by virtue of their re-registration was carried
out, which passed all 24 existing at that time the political parties.

After the referendum in 1996 and the dissolution of the Supreme Soviet
of the 13th convocation of the number of political parties in the
republic fell, was an intense process of reorganization. However, some
parties were registered only on paper, were not among the population of
serious social support, organizational units in the field, did not
conduct any work. According to the decision of the Supreme Court of the
Republic of Belarus were considered inactive Humanitarian Party, the
Belarusian Research and Production Congress, the Belarusian Party of
“cleansing”, the Belarusian Party of Beer Lovers, etc.

On the formation of a multiparty system in Belarus has a significant
impact Decree of the President of the Republic of Belarus of 26 January
1999 “On some measures to regulate the activities of political parties,
trade unions and associations, under which was held to re-registration.
The decree has increased the minimum number of party members required
for registration, with 500 to 1000 from the majority of oblasts and
Minsk. As a result of the 28 existing at the time of the issuance of the
Decree of political parties were reregistered 17. In 2007, the country’s
Supreme Court ruled to liquidate the Belarusian Ecological Green Party
“BEZ” and the Belarusian Party of Women “Nadzeya”.

Thus, at present (May 2008), the party system in Belarus includes 15
officially registered political parties.

Depending on your political orientation, ideologies, attitudes towards
statehood of the republic, to the problems of national and cultural
revival of the Belarusian party can be divided into several groups.

The first group includes the “Left” parties: the Communist Party of
Belarus (CPB), the Agrarian Party, Belarusian Patriotic Party, the
Republican Party of Labor and Justice, Communist Party of Belarus (PCB).
These parties uphold the socialist path of development, the
establishment of systematic and state-regulated commodity-money
relations. In the social sphere, they stand for the right to work, to
provide free secondary and higher education, free medical care, decent
housing, accessible recreation, social justice, welfare and safety of
its citizens.

With regard to the Communist Party of Belarus, as opposed to the
Communist Party of Belarus, have supported the course conducted in the
country and the state ideology, the PCB is now lost its influence in
society, entered into a coalition with right-wing “parties (the United
Civil and BNF) and opposed the existing power, its internal and foreign
policy.

The second group (social-democratic and socialist parties) may include
the Belarusian Social Democratic Party (Gramada), Party of the
Belarusian Social Democratic Hramada, the Social Democratic Party of
popular consent. They advocate a socially oriented market economy
reforms, with strong social protection of population from the state and
seek to express a position that combines national traditions with
international experience, which avoids the extremes of “right” and
“left-wing radicalism. The first two consider themselves to be bearers
of the social-democratic traditions in Belarus, originating from the
established in 1903, the Belarusian Socialist Hramada.

Social Democratic Party of popular consent, rather than joining the
opposition, in favor of the union of moderate social and political
forces, the consolidation of the Belarusian society. The essence of the
idea of popular consent is to abandon the revolutionary leaps in favor
of evolutionary development based on sound and progressive reforms. At
the same time, the party does not exclude the political struggle, but
limits its rigid framework of law and morality.

The third group consists of the Party of the liberal-conservative
orientation – United Civil Party (UCP) and the Liberal Democratic Party
(LDP). They underline the commitment to liberal values, market economy,
democracy and the multiparty system, guarantee civil rights and
liberties. LDP, while claiming constructive opposition to power, while
at the same time supports the President of the Republic of Belarus and
criticizing the number of opposition parties. This is the largest in the
country’s political party.

The main objective of the UCP, as emphasized in the held in April 2008,
the Eleventh Party Congress, is to strengthen the Party’s influence in
society, attracting to its ranks of professionals and influential
people, strengthening and developing regional structures. This is
especially important, given that the delegates to the Congress harshly
criticized the nerve center of the UCP because he “looked up from the
regions”, withdrew from active political activities of managers and
technicians are able to attract new members into the party.

A fourth group (the national-democratic parties) are the Conservative
Christian Party – BPF and BPF – one of the oldest parties in the
republic. The division of the party into two independent organizations
have been caused by a sharp decline in its credibility in the political
life of the country, as well as leaders of opposing views on events in
society and in the party process. Differences within the BNF have been
caused by the reluctance Z. Poznyak and his supporters to change the
strategy and tactics in the national-democratic movement, to compromise
with potential allies. Dissension BPF, ideological and organizational
separation, disruption of cooperation with political parties of the
democratic direction, claim to political isolation, weak institutional
structures – all this led to a sharp drop in rankings in both parties.

The fifth group includes the Belarusian Green Party, the Republican
Party and the Belarusian Social and Sports Party. At these parties there
is no system-ideological principles, a clear reliance on certain social
strata and the possibility of a significant impact on political life in
the country.

Traditional left-right political divide with regard to Belarus is
largely arbitrary and does not reflect the diversity of inter-party
differences.

At present, the party system of the Republic of Belarus is in the
formative stage, is unstable and has its own peculiarities.

One of the factors hampering the development of party building in
Belarus, is the fact that today the party is not represented in the
executive branch. Without representation in power structures, they are
unable to play the role of facilitator and liaison, communication bridge
between state and society, to become, finally, a form of citizen
participation in political decision-making and control authority.

Because political parties do not have the power levers to address the
pressing problems of people, people do not see the existence of large
parties benefit and do not need them. It is therefore becomes relevant
guidance “bridges”, the dialogue and close cooperation with the
authorities, political parties, bringing them to the consideration and
adoption of important socio-economic and political decisions.

In connection with the weak material-technical base of most political
parties does not own the media, shaping public opinion, and state and
independent media are usually trying to distance themselves from them.

Not all parties are able to develop a scientifically based, socially
balanced, constructive program of activities. Policy documents of many
parties do not contain a clear vision of the political, socio-economic
and spiritual development, characterized by eclecticism ideological
conclusions, vagueness, uncertainty about the future society. Despite
the fact that most parties favor a transition to a market economy,
democracy and the rule of law, the sovereignty of Belarus, in their
programs there is no mechanism for such a transition, balanced and
professional assessment of the situation, competitive proposals, the
development of specific measures and ways to achieve goals. Program
number of political parties are obsolete and do not correspond to the
realities of our time. With many of the provisions of the party
documents can not agree. Proposals are available in the arsenals of a
number of parties, need to be analyzed to determine their suitability in
terms of historical experience.

With the lack of differentiation of society in the socio-political
terms, the lack of middle-class social base for a full-fledged
multi-party system, fragmentation of the labor movement, it is difficult
to determine who actually represent the party and their leaders. The
extreme degree of fragmentation of the party forces, their inability to
consolidate – all this confirms the obvious weakness of the Belarusian
party. Most of them are few in composition and with difficulty managed
to step required for the registration line in 1000. It is impossible not
to notice that many smaller parties do not know anything except the
names of their leaders.

Moreover, among the political forces with a similar ideological
orientation and acting in a political field does not manifest a tendency
towards mutual understanding, to unite and strengthen those forces. This
is evidenced by the separate existence of the same type of political
organization: the two parties, the Belarusian Popular Front, two – with
a focus on the development of the republican system, two – with the
communist ideology, a few social-democratic parties. In this regard,
there is a need to unite close in the party’s ideology. Such parties,
reflecting the social and political aspirations of the citizens, to
compete for authority to implement the goals.

By mistake of the party, include the lack of attention to the creation
of organizational structures in the regions and the absence of a
permanent job with them, internal divisions, petty fight with each other
for the strengthening of positions in the Democratic camp, instead of
the association to address important policy goals, etc.

The above factors contributed to the weakness and backwardness of a
multiparty system. Therefore, talking about the current party system can
not yet walk. It is known that the party system in countries with
developed democracy was established over decades, for example, in
America – more than a hundred years. The presence of multiple parties –
this is not a multiparty system, but only the basis for the deployment
of the confrontation of ideas, rather than social interests. Genuine
multi-party needs to establish a special regulatory mechanism: the
interaction among parties, between parties and power structures, between
parties and society. The effectiveness of political parties, opposition
forces depends on their ability to gain support in elections, from
entering into meaningful negotiations with the government. This would
enable us to remove mistrust, bias in the relationship and create the
conditions for the coordination of positions and civilized conflict
resolution.

Thus, multi-party system as a permanent factor of universality and
democratic social system in Belarus is still in its infancy. Its
formation – a long and controversial process. The real state of the
political spectrum will be determined not with every available state
parties, but only those of them who will win the confidence of the
people included on the system of power and can influence the progress
and implementation of public and government affairs at the critical
issues facing society.

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