The political progress achieved in Belarus during the six months visa ban suspension period is largely cosmetic, and can be easily reversed. Nevertheless, it is essential to build on the positive dynamics accumulated since the beginning of the dialogue between the EU and the Belarusian government. The EU should therefore give Belarusian authorities a second chance and extend the sanctions suspension period for another six months. This was the dominant opinion expressed by the representatives of Belarusian civil society during the debate on the situation in Belarus and the future of EU-Belarus relations that took place at the European Parliament on 4 March 2009. The event was organised by the parliamentary groups of the Party of European Socialists and the European People’s Party (European Democrats) in the European Parliament in co-operation with the Office for a Democratic Belarus and the Pontis Foundation and brought together representatives of Belarusian NGOs, MEPs, the Belarusian Ambassador to the EU, NATO and Belgium, senior officials of the EU Council and the European Commission, as well as other interested parties.