MINSK, 1 March (BelTA) – The national information security concept will be revised at a session of the Security Council. Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko made the statement as he met with representatives of the general public and expert community, Belarusian and foreign mass media on 1 March, BelTA has learned.
The head of state noted that an information war is in progress in the world. “We don't want it to evolve into a hot war or to be a harbinger of dangerous clashes,” Alexander Lukashenko said.
The president stressed that Belarus should know how to confront this war using various methods. “We are going to improve the information security concept. We can see the problem and are dealing with it already. We are going to revise and toughen the concept so that you could understand in what direction the authorities will work, particularly in the run-up to the presidential and parliamentary elections,” Alexander Lukashenko said.
Alexander Lukashenko said he believes that it is necessary to first of all get united inside the country in order to resist information assaults from the West or the East. Opposition has to be constructive. “Russia doesn't want to lose Belarus, to orchestrate a coup here, to worsen the situation. I am convinced in it,” he said. “We have to bear all factors in mind. It is possible there is a problem from the East but there is an even greater problem from the West. Russians haven't deployed missiles to the west of Moscow in order to target Belarus. Why does Poland, other countries [have to do it]? I am not going to recount them. Let's be objective in this regard,” the Belarusian leader said.
On the whole, the head of state noted that ordinary Russians treat Belarusians well. “Why do we have to throw stones at them? It is understandable that we may feel economic pressure in some aspects. There may be some genuine concern about the tax maneuver. We will survive,” the president said. “In November we will finish upgrading our refineries and will buy oil on the market. The crude oil upgrading index will be 92-95%, as high as that of European oil refineries. Who will benefit from it? We will just bring someone else's oil to the Russian market.”
Information security in Belarus should not be built at the expense of others and by means of assaulting others, Alexander Lukashenko is convinced.
Speaking about sovereignty and independence, Alexander Lukashenko responded to criticism saying he had borrowed a slogan from Belarusian opposition. “The difference is that they [the opposition] were shouting a lot about it and tried to storm the gates. Ukraine has demonstrated what the approach can produce. I was doing it calmly, in a measured manner just like a Belarusian should. I felt that 10 million Belarusians and 5 million guests, who travelled via Belarus, were behind my back,” noted the head of state.
“We've created this state together. Should I wreck it with my own hands? We are all committed – and I am above all – to our sovereignty and independence. We only use different fight methods. I don't want a war, confusion or disorder,” Alexander Lukashenko stressed. “Those, who will try to destabilize the situation hoping to benefit from it, will feel the ‘flame of destabilization' first,” Alexander Lukashenko warned.
He remarked that a lot of programs concerning Ukrainian affairs are being created in Russia. “The effect is reverse. It has to stop. It shouldn't be done. The same is true for Belarus: we should talk less and do more. They tell me BelTA has received 2,000 questions within 24 hours [as part of the Your Question to the President initiative]. Take a look at what people want. Let's solve those problems,” Alexander Lukashenko stressed.
The head of state also talked about Belarusian as the language of instruction in schools and universities. “An MP raised the matter [of establishing a special university where Belarusian will be used as the language of instruction]. I gave instructions to take a better look at the possibility. As far as I can understand, the conclusion is not favorable. We have a sufficient amount of universities where Belarusian language is taught and where Belarusian is spoken as the language of instruction,” he said.
Speaking about the influence of foreign countries, Alexander Lukashenko said that websites financed by foreign sources are being created in Belarus. “They are allegedly designed to promote Russian accomplishments and, quote – unquote, ‘To keep Belarus within the framework of Russian interests'. Terribly stupid. You have to understand it is a harmful thing,” stressed the Belarusian leader.
Alexander Lukashenko talked about such websites at some length. “So, 12-15 people decide to create some group, some website. And we know who gives them money: one person was paid, another one was paid less, another one was paid nothing and he spilled the beans what kind of websites those are, who did what, and who pays the money,” the president noted. “Let me say it once again: it is an error on the part of certain individuals in Russia, who believe they can keep Belarus close by this way. You don't have to do it this way. We are an educated and smart nation. You just have to cooperate with us. You shouldn't reproach us that, for instance, we live off you. You just have to maintain normal relations with us. If we set up a union together, you shouldn't say that you've sold us oil or gas at a cheaper price.” Alexander Lukashenko added that Belarus will never break away from Russia.
“There is a group of people, who don't care how they make money. If they get paid Russian money, they are fine with it. We can see it. We can see just as well such a policy on the part of our Western neighbors. Things are much more serious over there. The former [the Russian side] are at least afraid of losing us while the latter are trying to destabilize us,” said Alexander Lukashenko. “We know what they [the West] say, we know their plans. Well, they may overthrow Lukashenko, Lukashenko is bad and so on. It is understandable. They've been trying to overthrow me for more than 20 years to no avail. But they pursue an anti-Belarusian policy. You should keep that in mind. This is why we get enough from this side and the other one. I've never tried to hide it and won't.”