Publication: Monitor Volume: 2 Issue: 4

Six leading pro-reform deputies of the newly elected Belarusian Supreme Soviet have founded the Civic Action ("Hramadzyanskae dzeyanne") parliamentary faction. The faction was created in advance of the legislature’s opening on January 9 and is headed by Stanislau Bahdankevich. Bahdankevich resigned in September as chairman of the National Bank under pressure from President Aleksandr Lukashenko. Former parliamentary chairman Stanislau Shushkevich is also a founding member of the group. The Civic Action program envisages "Belarus’s sovereignty and neutrality, the creation of a socially-oriented market economy, and observance of the Constitution by all organs of powers."

According to Bahdankevich, Civic Action will support the president and government only if they act to implement reform. (15) Given the experience of its leaders, Civic Action may prove more effective in advancing reforms and state sovereignty than the fervently patriotic and pro-Western Popular Front of the former parliament, a bloc comprised primarily of literary intellectuals. The Front lost all of its parliamentary seats in 1995.

While Deputies Challenge Lukashenko.