February 28, 2009 Website "" Shrove-tide is celebrated in the Grandfather Frost's residence in Belovezhskaya Pushcha

On February 28, the national holiday "Shrove-tide" to see off the winter is celebrated in the residence of Belarusian Grandfather Frost in Belovezhskaya Pushcha, BelaPAN informs.

Over 1,500 people, both residents of some regions of Belarus, visitors from Russia and representatives of the Lithuanian embassy, are taking part in it.

The holiday is developed on eight platforms. Creative groups from the Brest region are playing. There are game programs. An exhibition of the masters of crafts work houses is open. A master-class on woodcarving is working. Pancake and tea winter-air cafes are serving visitors.

The dramatized show "12 Months" where Winter God Zyuzya will hand his rights over to Spring Goddess Lyalya and a Winter scarecrow will be burnt in fire are the main component of the holiday.

Seeing off Winter-Mother and Snegurochka (Snow Maiden) who leave the Grandfather Frost's residence till December will also be held as a part of the program of the holiday.

About 60 thousand people have already visited the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" this year, while in 2008 there were 270 thousand visitors.
February 25, 2009 "Sovetskaya Byelorussia" (The Soviet Byelorussia) Newspaper, No 35 The spring goes along the street and bears pancakes on a saucer

The winter cheerfully to see off in Belovezhskaya Pushcha

Poles, Russians and Belarusians will be going to celebrate Shrove-tide at this weekend in the residence of Grandfather Frost in Belovezhskaya Pushcha. This holiday is not the family one and there is no tradition to give gifts but it features to get warm and extraordinary sincere atmosphere! The people do not regret that with winter is going off and they like to eat hot and ruddy sun-pancakes.

This year the national holiday to see off the winter will be developed on eight platforms. Every site will originally be designed and will be followed a certain style. Don't you master to dance? The folk-group "Neposedy" will set a rhythm. Independently of the weather, there will be no occasion to miss and to be cold: songs, dances, competitions, contests... Everyone can have a rest and fun! Grandfather Frost with Snegurochka (Snow Maiden) waits for the visitors and will tell about their residence. Then, Winter will pass the relay race to Spring.

The holiday will be crown with seeing-off the Snegurochka, the director of the Museum of Nature of the National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" Ludmila Grechanik tells. The Grandfather Frost's granddaughter lives in the residence only in winter. Shrove-tide without pancakes is not Shrove-tide! There will be many sorts of tasty pancakes on the holiday in Belovezhskaya Pushcha. The guests will be treated to fish-soup and flavoured tea there as well.

By Marina Panasiuk
Photo by BelTA
February 25, 2009 "Respublika" (The Republic) newspaper, No 35 The spring goes after Shrove-tide

Grandfather Frost in Belovezhskaya Pushcha will not resist the temptation to test hot pancakes during Shrove-tide

Shrove-tide is coming this week — time is to see off the winter, to welcome the spring and to test ruddy pancakes together with the darling mother-in-law. The cheerful holiday to see off winter – does it give us a good occasion to gather the family and to forget about problems for a short time?

On Saturday all people are invited to gather in Belovezhskaya Pushcha where the national holiday Shrove-tide will be held. This day fantastic aged man Grandfather Frost will say goodbye to winter and to Snegurochka (Snow Maiden) and will change his winter fur clothes. Even Grandfather Frost in Belovezhskaya Pushcha will not resist the temptation to test hot pancakes during Shrove-tide because of the case of this holiday, as was promised in the Department of Culture at the Brest Regional Executive Committee.

It is funny that our Shrove-tide which the true cheery fellows celebrate with the fancy-dress show has coincided with the Brazilian carnival.
Stepan Chirich
The news is placed in the short-cut form
The BP-21 Century editor's note
February 24, 2009 Website "" Locking Horns

Two bison locking horns in the Bialowieza National Park. Some 800 bison roam freely in the Bialowieza mountains located between Poland and Belarus.

Photo courtesy: AFP

February 13, 2009 "Sovetskaya Byelorussia" (The Soviet Byelorussia) Newspaper, No 27 "A Valentine days' present" for the book

4. Belovezhskaya Pushcha rules...

Belovezhskaya Pushcha, the reserve which celebrates the jubilee, is one more popular book theme of the year... The presentation of the book "Belovezhskaya Marvel" was accompanied by the demonstration of the Igor Byshnev's film "The Great Forest". The book, which is already 105 and it is devoted to Belovezhskaya Pushcha, was reissued this time...
Ludmila Ivanova

The news is placed in the short-cut form
The BP-21 Century editor's note
February 09, 2009 Website "The Embassy of the Republic of Belarus in Russian Federation" Belarusian scientists come up with long-term management plan for Belovezhskaya Pushcha

The staff of the Belovezhskaya Pushcha national park, in cooperation with Belarusian scientists, have devised a long-term management plan for the Europe's oldest nature reserve, the BELTA news agency quoted the presidential affair management department's press office as saying.

The document assigns the key role to a number of steps to be taken. These include expansion of the strictly protected zone within the park, restoration of the water regime previously disrupted by drainage projects both in and around the Pushcha, preservation of the forest and marshland system, and maintaining of the unique open marshes. In particular, the plan provides for measures to prevent overgrowth of bush in the 1.2 plus hectare Dikoye fen mire, the habitat of the largest aquatic warbler population, an endangered species.

Other measures included in the plan are aimed at protecting and restoring rare and valuable types of natural communities, research and monitoring, and environmental information and awareness targeted at both the local population and visitors.

The document also provides for improvement and landscaping of ten populated areas located within the national park, and preservation of their authenticity and traditional style.

The Belovezhskaya Pushcha long-term management plan is a cooperative project by the national park's staff and the Belarusian Academy of Sciences Center for Biological Resources Research. The plan was designed in pursuance with the 2008-2014 National Especially Protected Areas Development Program. Availability of a management plan is one of the key conditions set by the Council of Europe for extending the Special Diploma originally issued to the national park in 1997, the interviewees said.

It must be noted, too, that the draft plan has been approved by the Belovezhskaya Pushcha research and technical council, received the green light from the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment Protection, and passed evaluation by the Council of Europe.

Considering that the full implementation of the measures outlined in the plan would take a long time, it was decided that several tasks be prioritized in the five years to come. After that, the plan would be readjusted for another five-year period.
Translated by Alexander Sukhoverkhov
February 06, 2009 "The Official Web-Portal of the President of the Republic of Belarus" The Decree No 74 on February 6, 2009 "On rewarding by the state awards of the Republic of Belarus"

For outstanding achievement in the professional fields, big personal contribution to construction and commissioning the socially important objects, merits in development of the science, agriculture, physical training and sports, health protection, realization of the state policy in the field of the labour relations, courage and bravery on duty:
2. To give honourable ranks of the Republic of Belarus:
"Honourable Forester of the Republic of Belarus"

Nikolai Nikolaevich Bambiza
– general director of the State Nature Protection Institution "The National Park "Belovezhskaya Pushcha" of the Administration of Affairs of the President of the Republic of Belarus
The President of the Republic of Belarus A. Lukashenko

Press-Service of the President of the Republic of Belarus

The news is placed in the short-cut form
The BP-21 Century editor's note
February 02, 2009 Website "Charter'97" Criminal case opened against the administration of the National Park "Braslav Lakes"

The National Park "Braslav Lakes" has drawn the attention of the law-enforcement authorities once again.

As "Ezhednevnik" has learned the Public Prosecution Office of the Vitebsk region opened a criminal case against Ivan Kasianenko, director (now ex-director) of the Braslav Lakes National Park, and Nikolai Borovik, the vice-director of the Park. They are suspected in abuse of power or malfeasance in office. They are accused to cause 675 millions of roubles in damage to the National Park made from August of 2006 to December of 2007.

As we see in the modern history of Belarus all the ex-directors of the Braslav Lakes National Park are imprisoned after their resignation. The result is changeless in spite of all the measures taken by President Lukashenko.

The Park received its status of the national park in 1995. Since then it is under control of the Administration of Affairs of the President of the Republic of Belarus. Ivan Titenkov, former Manager of the Administration of Affairs of the President, dismissed the Park's director at that time and assigned Petr Mikholap the new director of the Braslav Lakes Park. However, as soon as Ivan Titenkov got in trouble, his protegee also fell in disfavour and in September 1999 Petr Mikholap was accused and found guilty in abuse of power.

Vladimir Senkovskij was appointed to manage the National Park instead of P. Mikholap. He was described by the Belarusian mass-media as young and dynamic. In the beginning it seemed that he was putting the affairs in order but then there was more and more alarming news coming from the Park. When Aleksandr Lukashenko learned about it, he sent there Zenon Lomat, his representative in the Vitebskaya region. The affair became a real and enormous scandal.

The personnel of the Park wrote a letter to Zenon Lomat and to the Public Prosecution Office telling that it is the Administration of Affairs of the President who is responsible. But once again it was the director of the Park who was punished. Vladimir Senkovskij was found guilty in abuse of power. After the guilty verdict for him and the book-keeper of the Park, Zenon Lomat Park was appointed the Chair of the State Control Committee. It is rumoured that he personally assured Lukashenko that he will put affairs of the Park in order and all will be okay. And indeed, the new director Ivan Kasianenko showed himself very active and busy in his new post in the good sense of the word.

The new director informed "Interfax" in April 2008 that the National Park under his management became a profitable business.

"We have no debts and we pay the taxes regularly. The salary of the stuff grows approximately 30% a year. Whereas in 2005 (under the management of Senkovskiy – G.D.) the National Park was on the verge of bankruptcy, the electricity was cut, the personnel received no salaries for months", he said.

However the year 2008 turned to be a bad year for Kasianenko.

The employees of the National Park "Braslav Lakes" told us that Ivan Kasianenko doesn’t work here anymore. They refused to say when he has left or where we could find him.

As we’ve learned Ivan Kasianenko resigned in 2008 in summer. It happened so quietly that nobody has heard of it, of its reasons or possible consequences. He was afraid to outrage the President. However the President will not stay aside.

The new scandal as they say may have the most serious consequences of all the proceeding. It is first of all because the President has no more patience. He can no more support the corruption in the Park and the most drastic measures will be taken.

There are rumored in the Administration of Affairs of the President that there will be lots of dismissals of the officials. Zenon Lomat, Chair of the State Control Committee, may also be touched because he got too calm and let the affairs of the National Park "Braslav Lakes" get out of control for another time. In any case Aleksandr Lukashenko will take measures.
Translated by Olga Tumar