Belarus, 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 (Viciebsk). Forty percent of its 207,600 square kilometres (80,200 sq mi) is forested, and its strongest economic sectors are agriculture and manufacturing.
Until the 20th century, the lands of modern day Belarus belonged to several countries, including the Princippality of Polotsk, the Grand Duchy of Lithania, the Russian Empire, and the Polish-Lithuanian Commnwealth. As a result of the Russian Revolution, Belarus became a founding constituent republic of the Soviet Union and was renamed as the Belorussian SSR. The final unification of the modern day Belarusian lands took place in 1939 when lands that were part of the Second Polish Republic were united with Belorussian Soviet Socialist Republic as a result of Soviet invasion of Poland. The territory and its nation 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. Due to the impact of World War II, 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 collapse of the Soviet Union, Belarus declared independence on 25 August 1991. Alexander Lukashenko has been the country's president since 1994. Under his lead and despite objections from Western governments, Soviet-era policies, such as state ownership of the economy, have been continued. Since 2000, Belarus and Russia signed a treaty for greater cooperation, with some hints of forming a Union State. Belarus also has the highest Human Development Index among members of the Commonwealth of Independent States.
Most of Belarus's population of 9.85 million reside in the urban areas surrounding Minsk and other voblast (regional) capitals. 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 by comparison, but both Orthodox and Catholic Christmas and Easter are officially celebrated as national holidays.
Capital and biggest city is Minsk
The President of Belarus is it's Head of State, he is elected for every 5th year. The Head of Government is the Prime Minister, chosen by the House of Representatives
The Country has one zoo mentioned on these pages in the city of Grodno and in the city of Minsk
Most western Countrys do need a Visa
International callingcode is +375
The countrys curency is the Belarusian Ruble (BYR)