MINSK (RFE/RL) -- Russia refused Belarus a 100 billion ruble ($2.96 billion) loan because the two countries have "unresolved problems" like "Belarus's reorientation toward the West, the recognition of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, [and] the access of Russian capital to Belarus," political scientist Yury Chavusau told RFE/RL's Belarus Service.
Chavusau said the Russian-Belarusian "agenda" is generally known, and it makes it "impossible" for Belarus to get money from Russia.
Russian authorities told reporters on April 2 that the loan was denied because the country has already loaned Belarus some $4 billion. Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka said that the loan would help the Russian ruble become a "real full-bodied regional currency" and is necessary for the country's "energy deliveries."
But some experts say Moscow wants Minsk to recognize the Georgian breakaway republics of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
Russia recognized the independence republics in August and only Nicaragua has joined Moscow in recognizing the regions and countries.