Last modified: 2004-12-18 by dov gutterman
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The Law "About State symbols of the Republic of
Belarus", dated 5 June 2004, can be downloaded in pdf format
Includes an b/w image of the coat of arms, with minor changes
from the version previously known, but no image of the flag. This
Law supersedes previous legislation about flag and coat of arms
from 1995 and hymn from 2002. The list of acts superseded can
also be downloaded from <pravo.by/pdf/2004-157/2004-157(004-007).pdf>.
The source seems to be some kind of "Official Gazette",
with mixed texts in Russian and Byelorussian. No apparent change
in flag description, however.
Antonio Gutierrez, 24 November 2004
The decree of the President of Belarus
June, 7, 1995
About the statement of Regulations About the National Flag of Belarus [Variations and additions: the Decree of the President of Belarus from November, 14, 1995 N 462 (Codex of decrees of the President and decisions of the Cabinet of Belarus, 1995, N 32, an item 782); the Decree of the President of Belarus from January, 16, 1996 N 27 (Codex of decrees of the President and decisions of the Cabinet of Belarus, 1996, N 2, an item 35); the Decree of the President of Belarus from April, 23, 1999 N 231 (the National registry of legal certificates (acts) of Belarus, 1999, N 33, 1/291)]
On the basis of the decision of the republican referendum which has been carried out May, 14, 1995, I Decide: 1. To ratify Regulations about the national Flag of Belarus it is applied.
2. To charge the Government of Belarus to present the President of Belarus of the offer on reduction of acts of Belarus consistency (according to) with the present Decree.
3. The decree is in effect from the date of his (its) publication.
President of the Republic of Belarus
It is authorized by the Decree of the President of Belarus from June 7, 1995 N 214 Regulations About the national Flag of Belarus
1. The national flag of Belarus stands for the state sovereignty of Belarus, represents the rectangular panel which is consisting of two is horizontally located color strips: top - red color of width in 2/3 and bottom - green color in 1/3 width of a flag. About a staff the Belarus national ornament of red color on the white field, constituting 1/9 lengths of a flag is vertically located. The attitude (relation) of width of a flag to its length - 1:2. The flag fastens on a staff (flagstaff) which is painted in golden (ohra) color.
2. The national flag of Belarus rises: above a president residence of Belarus - it is constant; above buildings of chambers of National assembly of Belarus - it is constant; above a building of Council of Ministers of Belarus - it is constant; above buildings of courts of Belarus, local executive and administrative bodies - it is constant, and above buildings in which sessions of local Councils (on advice of) of deputies are carried out, local executive and administrative bodies, - for the period of realization of sessions; on buildings and means of transportation diplomatic and consulates, on the buildings of trading establishments of Belarus placed abroad, on marine courts and other means of transportation on which as officials are the President of Belarus, the Chairman of the House of Representatives of National assembly of Belarus, the Chairman of Council (on advice of) of Republic of National assembly of Belarus, the prime Minister of Belarus or other persons representing National assembly of Belarus or Council of Ministers of Belarus, - in the order determined by Council of Ministers of Belarus; On facilities for voting - in days of elections and referendums; in army units of Belarus according to army charters; on frontier posts and check points (customs houses) of Frontier of Belarus; on marine ships, the ships of river fleet registered in Belarus; On sports arenas - during realization of the championships and superiority (championships) of Belarus, the international sports competitions to participation of national combined teams and during rewarding the Belarus sportsmen - winners of the international competitions; on other objects under the order of the President of Belarus, under the decision of National assembly of Belarus, Council of Ministers of Belarus, local Councils(on advice of) of deputies, local executive and administrative bodies. The national flag of Belarus can be lifted also at ceremonies and other solemn undertakings which are carried out by the state and public bodies, the enterprises, the organizations and establishments, during national, labor, family holidays and in other memorable days.
3. At a simultaneous raising of the national Flag of Belarus and flags of other states the national Flag of Belarus should be lifted from the left side (on the part of), and flags of other states - with right if to begin the person to a facade of a building or a flagstaff. Flags of the states settle down in alphabetic order. The national flag of Belarus settles down flush with flags of other states. The national flag of Belarus on vehicles (except for ships) settles down from the left side (on the part of) in a direction of movement, and a flag of other state - from the right side (on the part of).
4. The national flag of Belarus is established in facilities of sessions of chambers of National assembly of Belarus, Council of Ministers of Belarus, the Constitutional Court of Belarus, local Councils (on advice of) of deputies, local executive and administrative bodies, in service studies of the President of Belarus, the Chairman of the House of Representatives of National assembly of Belarus, the Chairman of Council (on advice of) of Republic of National assembly of Belarus, the prime Minister of Belarus, heads of other republican state bodies of Republic Belarus, chairmen of local Councils (on advice of) of deputies, heads of local executive and administrative bodies, other official bodies, commanders of military parts, divisions of the Ministry of Defense, Interior ministry, Committee of state security, boundary and railway armies, a civil defense and rooms in which deputies of Belarus constantly seeing voters, as well as in facilities of the state enterprises, the organizations, the state educational institutions.
5. During mourning under the decision of the President of Belarus, National assembly of Belarus or Council of Ministers of Belarus the national Flag of Belarus can be lifted in mourning registration. In this case a black ribbon is attached to the flag, which ends should hang down up to the bottom part of a flag. The flag lifted during mourning on a flagstaff, is lowered a little for 1/3 lengths of a flagstaff.
6. The display of the national Flag of Belarus necessarily is located on the aircrafts registered in Belarus.
7. The display of the national Flag of Belarus can be used in decorative objectives (with the purpose of) as the state and national symbol so that thus disrespect for the national Flag of Belarus was not shown.
8. The national flag of Belarus and its display regardless of their size always should conform to the color standard and a schematic display applied to the present position.
9. The persons guilty of defilement of the national flag of Belarus bear the responsibility according to with the laws of Belarus.
10. Rules of application of the present position and the order of manufacturing of the national Flag of Belarus are defined by Council of Ministers of Belarus.
Zachary Harden and Victor Lomantsov, 12 August 2002
Belarus had a referendum on Sunday, 14 May voting for stronger
presidential powers and closer economic integration with Russia.
Among the four questions put to the voters, was also one on
national symbols. The OMRI Daily
Digest reported that 75% of the voters (64.7% turn out)
"supported the return of Belarus's Soviet-era state emblem
and flag". The result is legally binding according to OMRI.
No further details on the design of the new emblems are offered.
jan oskar engene
UK press reports today suggest the re-adoption of the Soviet
Belarussian flag (ie with the stripes) but without the hammer and
sickle. It is also suggested that the coat of arms will be the
Soviet ones but without the slogan 'Workers of all Lands Unite.'
stuart notholt , 16 May 1995
Four polls were held, all of which were passed. Two concerned
state emblems (crest and flag) the third the re-adoption of
Russian as a state language and the 4th concerned with economic
integration with Russia. The full power of the state media was
deployed to ensure the correct result.
stuart notholt , 17 September 1995
OMRI's coverage of Belarus' symbols continue. According to
reports on 22 May, new banknotes with revised symbols will not be
issued this year. Replacement will be too costly. However,
tension over the question of the new flag has built up. A
presidential aide destroyed the white-red-white Belarusian flag
only a day after the referendum. OMRI also reports, on 25 May, of
a student demonstration in the capital Minsk against the decision
to replace the current national flag. 300 demonstrators marched
to the residence of president Lukashenka, tore down one of the
new Soviet-style flags and flushed it down a public toilet.
Questions have been raised as to the legality of the new flag,
since the referendum restoring it must be confirmed by Belarus'
jan oskar engene , 17 September 1995
The government claims it was a reaction to unpopular agitating
by ultra-nationalist college students in Minsk. Treat with a
considerable pinch of salt! The Belarussan government is run by
old-style Reds who are on record as regretting the demise of the
USSR. Having totally failed to introduce meaningful reforms and
having wrecked the economy, they now see cosying up to Russia as
a means of bailing out the situation. The Russians, incidentally,
are only luke warm!
Stuart Notholt , 17 September 1995
On May 14, 1995 a national referendum included the question "Do you agree with the adoption of the new National Symbols?" This question was approved by 75.1% of those voting. President Aleksander Lukashenko then issued two decrees, "On Approval of a Pattern for the National Emblem of the Republic of Belarus" and "On Approval of Regulations for the National Flag of the Republic of Belarus", officially adopting the new symbols.Adherents of the old symbols claim that the referendum in which they were replaced was unconstitutional, and that the propositions placed on the ballot were worded misleadingly.
The "old" symbols had been adopted only four years previously, on the occassion of Belarus' re-emergence as an independent nation. To most Belarusians those symbols were still new, and many may have believed that by "approving of the new symbols" they were voting to retain them. Intentionally or not, the new symbols were approved by 75.1% of those voting in the referendum. However, only 64.7% of eligible voters participated. So the new symbols were actually approved by only 48.6% of the Belarusian people. Detractors say that the Belarusian constitution requires approval of 50% or more of the Belarusian people (not just 50% of those voting) for any change to the constitution, including changes to the official national symbols.
Thus, a significant portion of Belarusians consider the new symbols to have been adopted unlawfully, and still recognize the old symbols as being the "real" ones. Still, an equally significant portion of Belarusians truly supported the new symbols.
Jarig Bakker , 7 July 1999
Dylan Crawfoot asked: Did Belarus adopt the
white-red-white flag immediately at the time of independence in
1991, or did they continue with a Soviet style flag for a period
They readopted the white-red-white immediately in 1991, IIRC they acctually did that before the formal dissolvance of the Soviet Union in December 1991. Later, they have however gone back to a flag which look very much like the flag they had as a state of the Soviet Union.
Of the former states of the Soviet Union, only one or two of the Asian states continued the use of the Soviet style flag for a while, and that was because they had no old flag tradition to immediately fall back on.
Elias Granqvist, 23 Febuary 2001