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Viktor Lukashenko elected first vice president of Belarus' NOC

Sport 19.11.2019 | 11:18

MINSK, 19 November (BelTA) - Viktor Lukashenko has been elected first vice president of the Belarusian National Olympic Committee (NOC). His candidacy was supported by the participants of the Olympic Assembly on 19 November, BelTA informs.

Olympic champion Dmitry Dovgalenok, deputy chairman of the Belarusian Canoeing Federation, has been elected NOC vice president.

According to the head of state, he has not made a final decision whether Viktor Lukashenko will work as first vice president of the NOC and as the president's aide for national security at the same time.

Aleksandr Lukashenko emphasized that there was no conspiracy in this decision. “If anybody thinks that he was appointed thanks to his father, I should say that he already has a good job, he is the president's aide for national security,” he said.

The president added that the proposal concerning the candidacy of Viktor Lukashenko was not made by the head of state.

“Many people who know me and my family proposed that. But when certain rather successful representatives of other countries started to insist that I should consider the appointment, I gave in,” the head of state said. However, he added that he had not decided yet whether Viktor Lukashenko will hold two positions concurrently. “This will be a big loss for the state. I once said that he became the president's aide because I needed a close and open channel of communication with the law enforcement sector,” the Belarusian leader explained. “You know, these agencies play a big role in the country and should be under president's control to prevent any developments like those we can see in neighboring countries. You know that I have been always keeping an eye on it and I could not find a better solution (and I don't regret now) than to appoint him the president's aide. I was aware of the situation in the law enforcement sector, especially in such special units as Almaz, Alfa, OSAM (a border division), the intelligence department of the General Staff. Senior officials kept in touch with him. We have done a lot so far to develop and equip these agencies using our own and sponsor's funds. Today they can promptly respond to any emerging challenges.”

In his words, it will be a serious loss if Viktor Lukashenko leaves the post of the president's aide. “I do not see any other candidate for this position right now,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

The head of state believes that the appointment of Viktor Lukashenko will help enhance Belarus' positions in international sport. “You know who works in international organizations today, who leads [sports] movements in various countries, you know how to work with those people,” the president added.

According to Aleksandr Lukashenko, some time ago he had to take issues concerning the development of sport under control to stabilize the industry and give an additional impetus to its development. The president remarked that Belarusian athletes have not shown outstanding results in recent time but also mentioned certain positive moments in sport. “Belarus, like no other relatively small country, has all tools for bringing up true athletes and Olympic champions. In Soviet times, our athletes, coaches and sports functionaries could not even imagine that we will have such training facilities. You have everything for productive training here,” he said. “The state has done a lot, and my goal was to develop the field.”

The participants of the Olympic Assembly supported the proposal to reduce the number of NOC vice presidents to two in order to avoid the duplication of functions and raise the efficiency of NOC executive bodies. “I think that two vice presidents are enough for our NOC. Everything is in our hands,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

The participants of the Olympic Assembly also elected new members of the NOC Executive Committee and other senior executives. Twenty-nine new members have been included in the structure of the organization.

BelTA reported earlier that in April 2019 the NOC Executive Committee made a decision that Belarus President's Aide for National Security Viktor Lukashenko will act for first vice president of the National Olympic Committee. It was specified that he will occupy this post in a temporary basis and pro bono, simultaneously working as the president's aide. It was planned to elect the NOC first vice president at the Olympic Assembly after large-scale sports events in Belarus.

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