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Belarus Terrain: generally flat and contains much marshland;

Natural Resources: timber, peat deposits, small quantities of oil and natural gas, granite, dolomitic limestone, marl, chalk, sand, gravel, clay;

Natural Hazards: NA;

Population: 9,625,888 (July 2013 est.)

Profile

Quick Facts About Belarus

Source: CIA World Factbook

Population: 9,612,632 (July 2010 est.)

Age Structure: 0-14 years: 14.2% (male 701,436/female 662,077)
15-64 years: 71.6% (male 3,336,400/female 3,545,412)
65 years and over: 14.2% (male 434,955/female 932,352) (2010 est.)

Religions: Eastern Orthodox 80%, other (including Roman Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, and Muslim) 20% (1997 est.)

Languages: Belarusian (official) 36.7%, Russian (official) 62.8%, other 0.5% (includes small Polish- and Ukrainian-speaking minorities) (1999 census)

Internet Users: 3.107 million (2008)

Country Name
conventional long form: Republic of Belarus
conventional short form: Belarus
local long form: Respublika Byelarus”
local short form: Byelarus”
former: Belorussian (Byelorussian) Soviet Socialist Republic

Government Type: republic in name, although in fact a dictatorship

Capital name: Minsk
geographic coordinates: 53 54 N, 27 34 E
time difference: UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)
daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

Military Branches: Belarus Armed Forces: Land Force, Air and Air Defense Force (2009)

Background

After seven decades as a constituent republic of the USSR, Belarus attained its independence in 1991. It has retained closer political and economic ties to Russia than any of the other former Soviet republics. Belarus and Russia signed a treaty on a two-state union on 8 December 1999 envisioning greater political and economic integration. Although Belarus agreed to a framework to carry out the accord, serious implementation has yet to take place. Since his election in July 1994 as the country”s first president, Aleksandr LUKASHENKO has steadily consolidated his power through authoritarian means. Government restrictions on freedom of speech and the press, peaceful assembly, and religion remain in place.

Area – Comparative: slightly smaller than Kansas
Area total: 207,600 sq km
land: 202,900 sq km
water: 4,700 sq km

Terrain: generally flat and contains much marshland
Climate: cold winters, cool and moist summers; transitional between continental and maritime
Natural Hazards: NA