According to Vladimir Makei, Belarus has always viewed Belgium as an important partner. He named Didier Reynders' visit as symbolic since the two countries are marking 25 years of the diplomatic relations in 2017.
Didier Reynders underlined that he is happy to have an opportunity to travel to Belarus on the first historic high-level visit, especially in the light of the 25th anniversary of the diplomatic relations.
Vladimir Makei said: “As far as specific arrests are concerned, it is necessary to take a look at who participated in these street rallies, who have been directly affected by the decree [on preventing social dependency]. It seems to us that many people in Belarus and abroad are trying to use these street protests for personal goals.”
“We know that it is not easy to be a neighbor of the European Union. We are doing our best to convince our partners in Moscow that Belarus can have good relations with both the European Union and Russia,” the Vice Premier of Belgium said.
“Before the meeting at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Reynders met with Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko. I should say that there was an absolutely open discussion and an open conversation on all the issues on our bilateral and multilateral agenda. The sides discussed all issues of our cooperation, including sensitive ones. There was a very substantial conversation,” the minister said.
Didier Reynders said: “It is vital to demonstrate new positive steps in the sphere of supremacy of law in Belarus in order to continue the dialogue. It can lead to further positive movement in the advancement of our relations in such matters as the facilitation of visa rules.”
The Polish Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs noted that cooperation within the framework of the Eastern Partnership Initiative had been discussed taking into account the summit that would take place in Brussel in November.