Belarus

       
Minsk

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officially the Republic of Belarus, is a landlocked country in Eastern Europe, bordered clockwise by Russia to the northeast, Ukraine to the south, Poland to the west, and Lithuania and Latvia to the northwest. Its capital is Minsk; other major cities include Brest, Grodno (Hrodna), Gomel (Homiel), Mogilev (Mahilyow) and Vitebsk (Vitsebsk). Over forty percent of its 207,600 square kilometres (80,200 sq mi) is forested, and its strongest economic sectors are agriculture and manufacturing. Map of Belarus. Until the 20th century, the lands of modern-day Belarus belonged to several countries, including the Principality of Polotsk, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, and the Russian Empire. In the aftermath of the Russian Revolution, Belarus became a founding constituent republic of the Soviet Union and was renamed as the Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic (BSSR). The borders of Belarus took their modern shape in 1939 when some lands of the Second Polish Republic were incorporated into it after the Soviet invasion of Poland. The nation and its territory were devastated in World War II, during which Belarus lost about a third of its population and more than half of its economic resources. The republic was redeveloped in the post-war years. In 1945 the Belorussian SSR became a founding member of the United Nations, along with the Soviet Union and the Ukrainian SSR. The parliament of the republic declared the sovereignty of Belarus on 27 July 1990, and during the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Belarus declared independence on 25 August 1991. Alexander Lukashenko has been the country's president since 1994. Despite objections from Western governments, Lukashenko has continued Soviet-era policies, such as state ownership of the economy. According to some organizations and countries, elections have been unfair, and political opponents have been violently suppressed. In 2000, Belarus and Russia signed a treaty for greater cooperation, with some hints of forming a Union State. Over 70% of Belarus's population of 9.49 million reside in the urban areas. More than 80% of the population are native Belarusians, with sizable minorities of Russians, Poles and Ukrainians. Since a referendum in 1995, the country has had two official languages: Belarusian and Russian. The Constitution of Belarus does not declare an official religion, although the primary religion in the country is Russian Orthodox Christianity. The second most popular, Roman Catholicism, has a much smaller following, but both Orthodox and Catholic Christmas and Easter are celebrated as national holidays. Belarus also has the highest Human Development Index among members of the Commonwealth of Independent States.

Capital MINSK
Currency Rublo bielorusso
Country code 00375
Spoken languages ​​

Russian and Belarusian

Passport

Passport: needed. It is recommended in any case inquire beforehand at the Embassy or Consulate of the country present in Italy or at your travel agent.

Health

The country is still marked by the consequences of the Chernobyl disaster, which contaminated areas so very serious ("exclusion zone") and other less sensitive ("danger zones"), especially in the South East (Gomel and Mogilev), and "Leopard spot" throughout the national territory. In case of a long stay, keep in mind the possibility of radioactive contamination is through food, both in the affected areas. Medical assistance at the Belarusian State healthcare facilities is sufficient but not complete; in these structures there are departments, where you can have a better service. In severe cases it is advisable to return to seek treatment at home. Although most commonly used medication is available, it is recommended that the passenger who needs specialized medications carry the necessary amount for the period of stay and write down the ingredients, also because of the language barrier and the different tradename of most preparations. In case of need, the unique number for the national emergency call 103 health. If you need to perform emergency medical repatriation, you can use airlines that operate daily (Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines, Lot). There are direct flights from Minsk-Minsk – Rome Fiumicino and Milan Malpensa, operated by the Belorussian airline Belavia (www.belavia.by, also in Italian language) with a frequency of three or four times a week depending on the season. It is mandatory to local law, obtain personal insurance including coverage for injuries and medical treatment. This insurance must be concluded with insurance companies authorised by the Government of Belarus (in fact they are just local insurance companies). It's possible the conclusion of the insurance upon arrival at the airport or when you cross the Belarusian border. The insurance taken out by other companies (including those issued in Italy) are not recognized as valid on the territory of Belarus. Warnings: You should avoid consuming food allegedly from contaminated areas, and generally any type of fungi. It is recommended in any case, prior to departure, contact your physician or healthcare facilities responsible for further advice and/or information. It also attracts the attention of those who wish to attend rural areas, particularly in summer, on the preventive measures to be taken against ticks that infest the countryside and that bring notoriously contaminating factors of serious diseases.

Telephony

the Republic of Belarus is entirely covered by the GSM network.

Information

Belarussian Auto Moto Touring Club (BKA) Zaharova St. 55 PO Box 218 Minsk 220005 tél.: +375 17 22 20 666 / 23 39 111 fax: +375 17 23 39 045 The BKA has a road rescue service obtainable by phoning or +375 116 17 222 0666

Climate

The capital Minsk is located at 234 m. above sea level; the country does not have heights exceeding 400 m. Long and hard winter with snow and ice for about 4 months. very short spring and autumn; hot summer with frequent changes of time. Those wishing to remain for long periods it is suggested to have clothes for all four seasons.

Viability

Licence Italian licence; International licence is recommended Car insurance Belarus is part of the "green card", which in Italy is provided by their insurance. Foreign motorists without "green card" must sign a short-term policy available in the border. It is recommended to have a helmet policy. Temporary importation of vehicles The motorist is obliged to declare the temporary importation of the vehicle on the appropriate customs form to be filled upon arrival. The duration of the temporary import depends on the length of the importer's entry visa. Remember those driving abroad, a car that is not advisable to have a delegation to conduct of the owner, with signature notarized by the notary public. Driving rules For bikers: helmets and lights required day and night. For motorists: seatbelts: required wear them on the front seats. Children under the age of 12 years are not allowed to travel on the front seats of passenger cars. Fire extinguisher and first aid: Scholarship required on board the vehicle. Blood-alcohol level for drivers: limit 0%

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