MINSK, 19 December (BelTA) – The complicated time requires political will and commitment to achieving results in the advancement of Belarus-Russia relations. Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko made the statement during negotiations with President of Russia Vladimir Putin in Minsk on 19 December, BelTA has learned.
Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “The complicated time requires us to show political will and commitment to achieving results in all topics on the bilateral agenda. It is our response. The position our countries will secure in a new system of international coordinates tomorrow will depend on how successful we will be in this work. We must in no way repeat the mistakes that happened after the collapse of the Soviet Union. This is why our unconditional priority is the resolution of sensitive economic issues, on which the population's wellbeing and ultimately support for the reforms we are implementing in the society and politics depend.”
In his words, thanks to joint steps the sides have managed to overcome possible negative effects of the sanctions-fuelled pressure as a whole. “Belarusian and Russian specialists have worked hard on the Union State programs, which Vladimir Vladimirovich [Putin] and I approved back in the day. Certain progress has been achieved virtually in all areas. But not everything is working out for now and it slows down our development,” Aleksandr Lukashenko stated. “You know, the governments say they have exhausted negotiation options on a number of sensitive topics. We are told that positions of the sides are formulated and today we will have to once again discuss them with larger delegations. The governments believe that it is impossible to come to an agreement on individual matters without you, Vladimir Vladimirovich [Putin] and I. It is the reason for our conference today. Well, let's discuss them once again in detail and make the relevant political decisions if necessary.”
The Belarusian head of state noted that he often meets with Vladimir Putin and discusses all matters. But matters of defense and security have been high on the agenda recently. “In the middle of this year he and I agreed that at the end of this year we will meet and will discuss the main social and economic issues that exist in our relations today,” Aleksandr Lukashenko explained.
He suggested doing productive work on the strategic areas able to determine the future of Belarus and Russia during today's negotiations. “It has become kind of a tradition – to address all the problems ahead of New Year's Eve, on which citizens of our countries have always pinned hopes for a better life. I am convinced that today's decisions will disappoint neither Belarusians nor Russians and will contribute to improving their welfare and confidence in tomorrow.”