Dictatorship is our brand. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko owes his tenuous grasp on reality largely to his press secretary, Natalya Eismont. Here’s how she gained such influence.

In the six years since she was hired as the Belarusian president’s press secretary, Natalya Eismont has become one of his closest associates. Many of Alexander Lukashenko’s adversaries — and more than a few former supporters — say Eismont bears much of the blame for the president’s current “detachment from reality.” Meduza special correspondent Maxim Solopov reviewed the professional milestones that led Eismont to her current prominence amid the largest protests in the nation’s history.

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