Meeting with Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin
Belarus and Russia have secured considerable progress in resolving painful problems. Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko made the statement as he met with Prime Minister of Russia Mikhail Mishustin on 3 September.
Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “I am deeply grateful to you for the last few weeks or even one month, a month and a half, during which the governments have been in intensive negotiations. We reached the relevant agreement with President of Russia Vladimir Putin even before the presidential election. Prime Minister of Belarus Roman Golovchenko told me yesterday that you’ve secured considerable progress in resolving painful problems for us.”
“I say more and more often, it is visible and tangible in our country due to individual hits of the so-called opposition of ours, I don’t know what else to call it, I don’t understand completely yet what to call it all. Nevertheless, it is a lesson for us,” Aleksandr Lukashenko noted.
The President stressed that this lesson should encourage two brotherly countries – Belarus and Russia – to make the relevant conclusions. “We could come to terms on many issues we couldn’t agree on in the past. You and the prime minister of Belarus have done a huge amount of work to reconcile our views and even reach an agreement on many terms,” Aleksandr Lukashenko stated.
In his words, Aleksandr Lukashenko and President of Russia Vladimir Putin have agreed that they will meet in Moscow after the meeting of the Belarusian and Russian ministers of foreign affairs on 2 September and the arrival of Mikhail Mishustin in Minsk. “And we will make final decisions on the matters that are very sensitive and painful for the two countries,” Aleksandr Lukashenko stated.
Aleksandr Lukashenko also thanked Mikhail Mishustin for Russia’s assistance at a time of need and a serious contribution to the stabilization of at least the economy. “Very serious. Particularly in people’s minds there has been a revolution that we don’t want Russia to turn away from us in these difficult times as a brotherly country and our main economic partner and target market (we sell nearly half of everything to Russia),” the Belarusian leader concluded.
Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “You can see what is going on near us. We see what is going on around Russia. We were forced to respond to NATO’s unfriendly steps near our borders. All the evidence is available despite their excuses – the redeployment of American army units, other units from the depth of their NATO territory towards the Belarusian border, particularly F-16 aircraft. I think they have redeployed either 16 or 18 aircraft.”
“We’ve deployed virtually half of the Belarusian army. We’ve actually taken control of the western borders with Lithuania and Poland. And as I often say, we’ve virtually surrounded Grodno in order to stand up against these threats. Maybe this demonstration has produced results,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.
“I have been following the developments in Russia and I have noticed that they in the West came up with a new gimmick. It is again Novichok [chemical nerve agent], again poisoning. I should tell you that yesterday or the day before yesterday, I do not remember exactly, before Merkel made a statement saying that it was an attempt to silence Navalny, we had intercepted a conversation. As far as we understood, it was Warsaw talking to Berlin. Two people were speaking. The conversation was intercepted by our electronic warfare specialists from our military intelligence. Taking into consideration that we redeployed some units there [to the western border], naturally we are involved in an electronic warfare with NATO. We intercepted an interesting conversation (I will forward it to you, we will also send it to the FSB). This conversation clearly suggests that it was a hoax. Navalny was not poisoned,” the Belarusian head of state said.
Aleksandr Lukashenko assumed that a group of experts had prepared some facts for German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her office, and maybe also the statement she made. “They did it, I am quoting ‘in order to discourage Putin from poking his nose into Belarus’ affairs’. I have just quoted this conversation. Do you see how Jesuitically these people act,” the President said.
“Thus, I think that Bortnikov and Naryshkin [the heads of Russia’s special services] will have to come to grips with this situation. We will forward the voice we recorded and the text. All the materials will be sent to your special services today or tomorrow, so that they will find out who is behind it. There was another quote: ‘After all, they are having elections soon, election day in Russian regions’. In other words, they know that Russia is having elections and they wanted to play a nasty trick in the run-up to it. We believe they will come up with something else. This is their style. This is their face,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.
“Belarus was also mentioned there. I will forward this conversation to you, so that you will be able to read it,” the President added.
Aleksandr Lukashenko assumed that ‘they will make our life tough’. “I have no doubts about it. However, you should know that we are fully determined to defend our sovereignty and independence and we will not let anyone coerce us. We are aware of who is pulling the strings. We see that they are already up to their neck in this lie and deception. However, truth has always prevailed. I believe that God is on our side,” the President added.