Belarus is situated in the centre of Europe and borders on 5 countries: Russia, Ukraine, Poland, Lithuania and Latvia. The country occupies the area of 207,600 sq. km. Its population is 9,503,800 people. The country has no seashore, yet Belarus is a significant trade and transport link between Europe and CIS countries. Minsk, the capital of the Republic of Belarus, is located in the centre of the country.
The most common religion in Belarus is Christianity. Belarusian Christians practice Orthodoxy, Roman Catholicism, Greek Catholicism (Uniate Church), and Protestantism. Among other religions, the most popular are Judaism and Islam.
There are annual festivals held in Belarus, which introduce different waves and styles of musical arts: Belarusian Musical Autumn, Minsk Spring, Zolotoy Shlyager, Muzy Nesvizha Festival. "Slavyanskiy bazar in Vitebsk" International Art Festival has become a symbol of the Belarusian festival movement. Popular variety performers from different countries of the World take part in the Festival.
The most famous theatre is the National Academic Big Opera & Ballet Theatre of the Republic of Belarus. There are grand theatre festivals held in Belarus, which include Panorama in Minsk and Belaya Vezha in Brest.
The most famous Belarusian writers and poets are Simeon Polotskiy, Yanka Kupala, Yakub Kolas, Maksim Bogdanovich, Vasil Bykov, Vladimir Korotkevich.
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