Parliamentary Chamber: Verkhovny Soviet


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  Verkhovny Soviet

Dates of elections / renewal (from/to):

  29 November 1995
10 December 1995

Purpose of elections:

  Elections were held for the remaining 141 seats (of 260) which had not been filled at the May 1995 general elections.

Background and outcome of elections:

  It will be recalled that only 119 of the 260 parliamentary seats were filled in the general elections of May 1995. As this total fell short of the two-thirds (174) quorum, new elections were required for enabling the legislature to sit. In June, it was decided to hold this fresh round in the autumn. Polling for the remaining 141 seats accordingly took place on 29 November, when 865 candidates were in the running. Only 20 Deputies were then returned. On 10 December, runoffs between the two leading candidates were held in the other 121 constituencies; 59 more seats were then filled so that, with an overall total of 198 Deputies definitely chosen, the quorum was finally reached. Due to shortages in the applicable electoral majorities, 62 seats still remained vacant.

During the campaign, President of the Republic Alexander Lukashenko had threatened to do away with the parliamentary system and rule by decree if the legislature could once again not be constituted. He labelled many candidates unfit for office and encouraged citizens to boycott the polls. The state mass media, for its part, gave scant coverage to the election process. Nevertheless, voter turnout was relatively high in both rounds and foreign observers deemed the balloting regular as a whole.

On 10 January 1996, the new Assembly elected Mr. Semyon Sharetsky as Speaker, this choice seen as reflecting the generally conservative nature of the legislature dominated by the agrarian and communist parties which had already topped the May elections and which now had a combined total of approximately 80 seats. He called for cautious change to introduce a "controlled market economy", favoured limited privatisation of small enterprises, and warned against avid support for closer integration with the Russian Federation as championed by President Lukashenko.


Round no 1: Distribution of seats  
Political Group Total
Communist Party 42
Agrarian Party 33
United Civic Party 9
Party of People's Accord 8
All-Belarusian Party of Popular Unity and Accord 2
Social Democratic Assembly 2
Patriotic Movement 1
Green Party 1
Republican Party of Labour and Justice 1
Peasant Party 1
People's Party 1
Social-Sports Party 1
Ecological Party 1
Independents 95

  62 seats remained vacant

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Copyright 1995 Inter-Parliamentary Union