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In September, the Ministry of Justice carried out a recertification of attorneys.As a result, the licenses of approximately seven lawyers who advocated in politically motivated cases were canceled or suspended.The curbing of the social protests and the weakness of the political opposition means that Lukashenka’s rule does not face any substantial political threats.

The authorities increasingly considered nongovernment organizations as providers of social services and additional financial resources, rather than a wellspring of political risk.

In such conditions, the depoliticization of CSOs continued, and authorities encourage such a strategy without engaging in substantial democratic changes.

Local authorities sought to improve cooperation with CSOs, following the recent trend of local grassroots initiatives becoming more visible and numerous.

At the local level, authorities gained more independence from the state authorities in spending the financial resources that they obtained.

In recent years, the authorities, while decreasing state funding, have exposed GONGOs to international funding by supporting and lobbing at international level.

International donors have also become more open to cooperation with GONGOs.

The ratings are based on a scale of 1 to 7, with 1 representing the highest level of democratic progress and 7 the lowest.

The Democracy Score is an average of ratings for the categories tracked in a given year.

The general number of anticorruption cases significantly increased in 2017 due to law enforcement agencies’ anticorruption activities.

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