Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko emphasized a special role of the State Security Committee (KGB) in ensuring the country’s security at a meeting with KGB Chairman Valery Vakulchik on 1 February.
“We are often criticized for keeping the old name of the State Security Committee. I can see, however, that today many of my counterparts envy us. They are envious not because we have preserved the traditions. Although, it is very important as well. We must not be ashamed of the old things. We were part of the system, but still there were fewer crimes here, in Belarus. So I will put it straight, we have nothing to be ashamed of,” Alexander Lukashenko said.
“The KGB is the accurate name now, in today's world. Due to the trends that have been happening in the world, we have kept the previous name, and this name is very important. We ensure the security of the state in all areas,” the Belarusian leader noted.
According to him, intelligence and counterintelligence are very important lines of work of the KGB. “These are the core activities of the KGB. The fight against terrorism is the most important area of work. The safety and security of our citizens are not about getting those who violate rules to account. For Belarus security primarily means the economic security today. The KGB also pays great attention to this work although the main actor in this area is the State Control Committee,” the head of state noted.
Alexander Lukashenko thanked the KGB for a great contribution to the fight against corruption. “I want to thank you for your anti-corruption efforts, though many agencies are involved in this anti-corruption fight. But it is the KGB who has made the greatest contribution, especially with respect to high-profile corruption crimes,” the head of state noted.
“Corruption is rust. Whatever good things we do in the society, or laws we adopt, if there is corruption, like in some states where it is running high, and if we do not fight against it, then there will be no progress in the country. Like rust, corruption is highly corrosive. Combating it is vital. It is a pity that some agencies that are responsible for such matters have not reached your level yet. This is, however, a matter for me to solve. I will help them to get on par with your efficient performance,” the Belarusian leader said.
“You cooperate closely with the Prosecutor General’s Office, the Interior Ministry, and the Investigative Committee. Your bare-knuckled fight against corruption is the protection of our state from the collapse and internal infighting. People will not tolerate corruption. Otherwise, this will lead to disturbances. They may not be cardinal and revolutionary, but it will be hard for the authorities to function if the country is corrupted,” Alexander Lukashenko added.