MOSCOW, 23 December (BelTA) – Belarus and Russia will not tolerate the lies of Western countries about the migrant crisis at the Belarus-EU border, Chairman of the International Affairs and National Security Commission of the Council of the Republic Sergei Rachkov told reporters on the sidelines of the second meeting of the 61st session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Belarus-Russian Union State in Moscow on 23 December, BelTA has learned.
“We are not going to be silent when we see what is happening at the Belarusian-Polish border. The Polish soldier asked for political asylum in Belarus and told us that the Polish side actually destroyed those refugees whom Belarus provided all kinds of humanitarian aid and other kinds of assistance. At the same time the parliaments of a number of neighboring countries made statements accusing Belarus of a hybrid attack on the EU countries. This is an outright lie, we are not going to put up with it. I am sure that the statements made by the parliamentarians of Russia, the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, send a clear message to the collective West that Belarus and Russia are together in this matter as well,” the MP said.
Sergei Rachkov stressed that Belarus and Russia are actively cooperating to fence off the sanctions pressure from the West. "The collective West has launched an attack not only on Belarus but also on Russia," he said. “Therefore, the program on concerted action in foreign policy of Belarus and Russia is especially relevant now. Our foreign ministries are cooperating very actively. So are the parliaments. In particular, I would like to note that through joint efforts, the delegations of the Russian Federal Assembly and the National Assembly of Belarus managed to block the inclusion of an emergency issue on Belarus into the agenda of the 143rd Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union. We also appreciate the position of our friendly states on the post-Soviet space, the countries of Africa and Asia on this matter.”
The MP stated that the current international situation requires joint efforts. "I think that 2022 will be just as tense in international terms," he said. "Therefore, we will strive to cooperate even more closely, to support each other both in international organizations and in inter-parliamentary venues."
On 23 December, the Union State MPs adopted the draft budget of the Union State for 2022, made changes to the budget of the Union State for the current year. The structure of the Parliamentary Assembly has been changed: the number of its standing commissions has been increased from 8 to 12. In addition, the Union State MPs approved the work plan of the Parliamentary Assembly and the plan of its international activities for 2022.
The first meeting of the session was held in Minsk on 2 December. Back then Vyacheslav Volodin was re-elected head of the Parliamentary Assembly, and the powers of the Russian deputation were confirmed. The PA also adopted a statement over the situation on the Belarusian-Polish border. The MPs called on the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, the European Parliament and other EU structures to take concrete measures to resolve the crisis.