MOSCOW, 21 February (BelTA) – Belarus is perceived in Europe as a place of peace and security, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Belarus to Russia Vladimir Semashko said during a reception hosted by the diplomatic mission on the occasion of the Day of Fatherland Defenders and the Armed Forces of Belarus in Moscow on 21 February, BelTA has learned.
“To our greatest regret, there are many conflict hotspots in today's world. Stability and wellbeing of entire regions are offered as a sacrifice to geopolitical interests. At a time when terrorism, local wars, interethnic and other conflicts are raging in the world, Belarus has preserved stability, peace and accord. Today Belarus is associated with peace and security in Europe, while the reliability of the time-tested Minsk negotiation platform instills confidence that one can negotiate and resolve conflicts here. Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko has repeatedly confirmed the country's readiness to take part in peacekeeping operations, if it is acceptable to all the parties to a conflict,” he said.
Vladimir Semashko underlined that Belarus' position is open, fair and sincere. “Belarus has never viewed any state as a potential enemy. We are pursuing a balanced and multi-vector policy based on the principles of mutual respect, equality, partnership, non-interference with the affairs of sovereign states,” he said.
The diplomat noted that Belarus has everything in place to give an adequate response to today's risks, challenges and security threats. “Our army regularly receives the latest in machinery and armaments, including those made in Belarus, and is staffed with highly qualified specialists. Our Armed Forces are a secure foothold for our allies. Military cooperation with the brotherly nation of Russia aimed exclusively at the Union State defense capacity building is a good avenue of Belarus-Russia integration, Vladimir Semashko said.
In order to ensure peace and security in the region Belarus has been promoting a dialogue with neighbors and partners in Europe, and has taken a constructive position in the OSCE. “During the years of independence, we have not given any reason to accuse us of aggressive intents, of stirring problems for neighbors, provoking conflicts and behaving opportunistically,” the ambassador said.
The diplomat recalled that Belarus has consistently promoted cooperation with the allies in the Collective Security Treaty Organization and the Commonwealth of Independent States. “We also believe that it is crucial to maintain a constructive dialogue with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization based on the principles of equality and mutual accommodation,” he added.
The reception in the embassy was attended by veterans of the Great Patriotic War, State Secretary of the Union State Grigory Rapota, pilot-cosmonaut Oleg Novitskiy, representatives of the CIS Executive Committee, the Eurasian Economic Commission, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Belarus-Russia Union State, Joint Staff and the Secretariat of the Collective Security Treaty Organization, the State Duma, the Foreign Ministry and Defense Ministry, the Armed Forces, and military attaches accredited in the Russian capital.More about Politics