BARANOVICHI, 1 September (BelTA) – Close cooperation with Russia should continue, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko told reporters as he visited Baranovichi State Vocational and Technical College of Service Industry on 1 September, BelTA has learned.
Aleksandr Lukashenko emphasized that Belarus and Russia will maintain close contacts like before, despite recent statements about souring relations between the countries. The president commented on that during his Address to the Belarusian people and the parliament. “In my address in the run-up to the election I said: you call us partners today; we became your partners, not brothers. I said it with regret. I was heard in the Kremlin, everywhere. We are brothers today. If we want to become brothers again, we should not wait till someone in the West starts pressurizing us. We have learned our lessons and drawn certain conclusions. The president [of Russia] and I have already made these conclusions. No matter what they say there, no matter what nonsense they talk here on the squares, we will retain our common Fatherland. Our common Fatherland is where two nations with the same root live. This Fatherland stretches from Brest to Vladivostok.
The president stressed that Belarus and Russia are linked, among other things, by close cooperation and production ties. Raw materials and components from Russia are very important for some economic sectors. Russian companies also benefit from Belarusian contracts and orders. “I have never turned my back on Russia. I am an experienced person. I understand that our manufacturing sector is very interdependent,” he said. “This is a purely media hoax that Lukashenko turned to the West."