Consolidating collaboration perspectives: Unfolding pro-Chinese propaganda in Belarus

Narrative

Interestingly, pro-Chinese propaganda was promoted extensively by state actors as diplomats and state television rather than the expected proponents of Russian propaganda. The same narrative has been spread in Belarus as in the other countries of the EaP, namely, the humanitarian aid of China to countries facing COVID-19 outbreaks. Within the narrative, messages of friendliness and special relationship are being stressed on, as an attempt of China to consolidate its authority in the country. Similarly, Belarus responded by sending humanitarian aid to China.


China and Belarus are uniting forces to fight coronavirus
Source: Mogilev News

Dissemination

State actors

The President of Belarus, Aleksander Lukashenko praised the close collaboration between Belarusian and Chinese experts to defeat the pneumonia that is provoked by the novel coronavirus (Aleksander Lukashenko is rather inclined to believe that Belarus has to fight pneumonia, not the virus). Besides, he affirmed that Belarus will always be a trustworthy and reliable friend of China. The words were proved by the fact that Belarus offered almost 40 tons of humanitarian aid to China.

Minister of Internal Affairs, Vladimir Makey, mentioned in an interview the fruitful and strong collaboration between the countries. He added:
“During the next week we expect to receive humanitarian loads with medical equipment from China. This is all humanitarian aid, we did not pay for it.”


China appreciates the support of Belarus and responds with similar measures
Source: Belta.by

H.E. Ambassador of the Popular Republic of China in Belarus stated his appreciation about the relationship between the two countries. H.E the Ambassador of Belarus in China praised the discipline and cohesion of the Chinese citizens wearing masks everywhere and being responsible about their own health.


Belarus and China – the evergreen friendship amid COVID-19 storm
Source: Belta.by

Pro-Chinese propaganda has been covered as by state persons, as well as by pro-government state media (Belta.by) and the local service of Sputnik.


China will send experts to fight COVID-19 in Belarus
Source: Sputnik.by

Target

The narratives are spread in order to diminish as the pro-European enthusiasm of citizens and attempts to diversify the perspective of potential collaboration that can exist as an alternative to the traditional one with the Russian Federation. These are also intended to shape a more benevolent and welcoming attitude towards Chinese aids and investments among the Belarusian citizens.

Disproof

Indeed, there is a history of economic partnership between China and Belarus. China is often seen as an alternative partner that will allow Belarus to be less dependent on Russia. The fact that the pro-Chinese propaganda has been voiced by top state actors show the perspective of Belarus to consolidate the position and partnership between the countries.