Rather an outcast in the West, Lukashenko was embraced in Beijing, where he was on an official visit till Tuesday and where he found complete support and understanding. After Uzbek President Islam Karimov, Lukashenko was the second CIS leader, reaching out for help to China. He was promised economic aid and protection from accusations in authoritarianism. But the core political achievements of the tour were, of course, the strategic partnership declaration and the dialog on Belarus entry into the Shanghai Cooperation Organization.Read the rest here.
Wow. There's a biggie. I think this a big deal on multiple levels.
1. There's only been one color revolution in an SCO state (Kyrgyzstan) and somehow I doubt that Russia or China will let another go down. I'd have doubts if Belarus gets full membership of there ever being one there.
2. This would set the border for the EU. It's Ukraine and Georgia on the East then, folks.
3. It also sets up the rival for NATO on NATO's borders with muscle. Russia as yet doesn't have that muscle. It might should the economy keep humming along, but...we'll see.
4. Developments in Russia ought to be rather interesting, da? Not exactly a lot of democracies in the SCO.