Belarus, officially known as the Republic of Belarus, is a landlocked country located in Eastern Europe. It is bordered by Russia to the east, Ukraine to the south, Poland to the west, and Lithuania and Latvia to the north. The country has a diverse landscape, with forests covering around 40% of the country, and more than 11,000 lakes and 200 rivers. The capital and largest city is Minsk, and other major cities include Brest, Grodno, Mogilev, and Vitebsk. Belarus has a diverse culture, with influences from both Eastern and Western Europe, and a rich history dating back to the Kievan Rus' state in the 9th century. Today, Belarus is a presidential republic with a high level of human development and a strong economy, with a focus on heavy industry, agriculture, and information technology.