For a long time it was just www.google.com/intl/be/ that had Belarusian user interface. Then www.google.com.by came along and became an official Belarusian Google search page. Because of obscure intellectual property and copyright laws in Belarus, domain google.by belonged to an e-media company called ActiveMedia, which for almost five years displayed Google Adsense ads within otherwise standard Google Search user interface. Ironic, isn’t it? This fact even lead eWeek to accuse Google of “ending the company’s nearly decade-long tradition of an ad-free front page”. But after hearings in the Belarusian Supreme Court in December of 2008 Google was granted the right to google.by
I’m not sure about the faith of the ActiveMedia or exact court order. What is more clear is that company’s website is still up but latest press release was published on April 1st 2009. It should be safe to assume that they are essentially out of business.
However, up until mid December 2010 google.by redirected all traffic to google.com.by and now it’s the other way around, google.com.by redirects to google.by, at last.
Below is a screenshot of Alexa.com traffic statistics for google.com.by and google.by. December 15th looks like clear switchover date, though I have no explanation to the sharp drop in google.com.by traffic on November 1st, neither can I tell you why google.com.by is still getting some significant numbers of page views.