Belarus is a state in Eastern Europe, formed at the end of the Soviet Union, of which it was a republic. Landlocked, it is bounded to the East by European Russia, to the Northwest by Latvia and Lithuania, to the West by Poland, and to the South by Ukraine.
This country, which maintains close economic and political ties with Russia, remains the last dictatorship in Europe. It is divided administratively into a municipality (horad), that of the capital, Minsk, and 6 provinces (voblastsi; singular : voblasts’), and whose names are the same as those of their chief towns : Brest, Homyel’, Grodno, Mahilyow, Minsk and Vitsyebsk. Belarus has an area of 207.600 km2 and a population of 9.65 million (2009).