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Crackdown Imperils Western Efforts to Reduce Russia’s Sway in Belarus

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The rapprochement between the West and Belarus, Moscow’s restive ally, is hitting new turbulence as outrage grows over arrests of the country’s opposition leaders and its mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic.

Europe’s longest-serving leader, in power since 1994, President Alexander Lukashenkobegan courting Washington and the European Union after Russia invaded neighboring Ukraine in 2014. Eager to contain Moscow’s geopolitical sway and grateful for Mr. Lukashenko’s refusal to permit Russian military bases, Western nations…

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