Meeting with Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergei Lavrov
Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko is convinced that it will be possible to resolve the problems that exist in Belarusian-Russian relations. He made the relevant statement as he met with Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sergei Lavrov on 19 June.
Since Aleksandr Lukashenko had talked to President of Russia Vladimir Putin over the phone right before meeting with Sergei Lavrov, the Russian minister of foreign affairs started by saying: “I am not here to say hello on the part of Vladimir Vladimirovich [Putin].”
“I want to say hello to you [from the Russian president] instead,” Aleksandr Lukashenko laughed. “I just talked to him. So, I send his regards to you. We truly had such an open and kind conversation. Although many think sparks are flying in our relations. Nothing like that! There are always problems.”
“You need sparks for ignition to move forward,” Sergei Lavrov noted.
Aleksandr Lukashenko responded: “I totally agree. This is the way we are looking at our relations. Certainly, we have enough problems and so have you. I am talking about the pandemic, which has aggravated many problems, and problems at the international level, you understand and feel them better than I do. And today you have more than enough political problems due to the adoption of new amendments to the Constitution. We have the presidential election to take care of. This is why indeed everything proceeds in parallel in our countries. These problems are mirrored in Belarus and Russia.”
“I think we will resolve them. They are not catastrophic problems,” the Belarusian leader was convinced.
“This is why if someone counts on setting us at odds with each other (a quote) and worsen our relations, it will not happen. I totally agree with him [Vladimir Putin]. If someone counts on that, it will definitely not happen,” the head of state continued.
Aleksandr Lukashenko said he was confident it would be possible to overcome an entire range of pandemics, including a news pandemic, an economic pandemic, a political pandemic, an oil pandemic, and a gas pandemic. “We will overcome all of them. We have the capability to do it. We’ve discussed problems of the pandemic. And I can see how the treatment situation in Russia is getting stabilized. He suggested a new drug to me. It has proven effective in the Russian Federation. Frankly speaking, we use a Japanese analogue, but yours is an improved version,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.
The head of state noted he had already instructed the Healthcare Ministry to import the drugs from Russia and test their treatment capabilities. “The drug has proven its effectiveness even in treating important officials in Russia. We will try it, too. Although the situation is bearable. I think we can handle it. Even more so if we work together,” Aleksandr Lukashenko added.
In turn, Sergei Lavrov noted that his visit to Belarus was supposed to have taken place one month before but plans had to be adjusted due to the epidemic situation. “I am grateful for the reception and for the cooperation that our ministries of foreign affairs maintain on the basis of the plan you and the president of Russia have approved. Today we will look at what we have accomplished. Work proceeds smoothly across the board, in all international organizations,” the Russian minister of foreign affairs said.
Sergei Lavrov also remarked that an intergovernmental agreement on the mutual recognition of visas will be signed today with approval of the two presidents. The event will have very positive significance for third-country citizens, who visit Russia and Belarus, for representatives of the private sector, and the diplomats, who are accredited in Moscow and Minsk at the same time. “I think it will be very well received and it will continue our joint construction of the Union State of Belarus and Russia in practice,” Sergei Lavrov stressed.