Ceremony to present state awards and general’s shoulder straps to distinguished Belarusians

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Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko presented state awards and general’s shoulder straps to distinguished Belarusians at a solemn ceremony at the Palace of Independence on 7 March, the eve of International Women’s Day.

“It is difficult to think of an event that would be more consonant with the spirit and meaning for the Year of Peace and Creation than today’s ceremony,” the head of state said at the beginning of the event. “In line with a good tradition, in the first days of spring we celebrate the country’s most successful women and the bravest men,” Aleksandr Lukashenko added.

The President explained why mothers are held in such a high esteem in Belarus. According to him, motherhood is the highest purpose and meaning of life, the affirmation of unshakable human values, the basis of everything on this earth. “After all, everything on our planet rests on unconditional maternal love, big women’s hearts, their inexhaustible energy,” the Belarusian leader emphasized.

Aleksandr Lukashenko thanked all women, including all mothers of the country, for the huge role that they play in Belarus.

The President noted that today women, along with men, are making great strides in science and technology, manufacturing, food production and financial sector, construction, art, education and healthcare. They also successfully represent their Motherland at most prestigious forums and leading theatrical stages of the world, preserve and augment the cultural heritage of Belarus.

Addressing the officers, generals that were in attendance, the head of state emphasized that they are also the personification of the Year of Peace and Creation, because they reliably protect our sovereignty and independence, or, in other words, “our quiet and peaceful life”.

“In times like these, people begin to understand the true value of seemingly simple things - peace, order and calm,” the Belarusian leader stated.

According to the President, the awards and new epaulets that were presented in a solemn atmosphere, are recognition of significant services to the Fatherland, acknowledgement of exceptional professionalism and demonstration of great trust of the Belarusian people.

“I believe that you are also well aware that it is our duty to maintain peace on Belarusian soil whatever it costs! I believe in each of you, in our army, people in uniform and all those who wear them today,” said Aleksandr Lukashenko.

The head of state thanked everyone for dedication, professionalism, devotion to duty and patriotism, and sincerely congratulated everyone on receiving high awards and titles, and women on the upcoming holiday. “I wish everyone new professional and personal achievements, good health, happiness and well-being. Everything that we, men, do today we do for you and those children that you gave birth to. I hope you will give birth to more children, although the women in attendance have fully fulfilled their maternal duty.”

Aleksandr Lukashenko presented the Order of Mother to women who gave birth to and raised five and more children. These women came from various regions of the country and various walks of life. Among them were controller at border group 86 of military unit 2187 of the State Border Committee Olga Budnik, forewoman from the Voronetsky agricultural enterprise Viktoria Petelchits, leading legal adviser at Gomel Plant of Special Tools and Technological Equipment Anastasia Panasenko, supply and logistics specialist at military unit 64608 of the Armed Forces Alesya Dolova, economist at Priorbank Oksana Yashonkova.

Deputy Chief of Armaments of the Armed Forces Vitaly Shestak was awarded the Order for Service to the Homeland 3rd Class.

Representatives of various fields of expertise were awarded the Medal for Labor Merits and the Medal of Francysk Skaryna, as well as honorary titles. Among them were hard alloy presser at Minsk Gear Works Svetlana Zhilko, Dean of the Engineering and Technology Faculty of the Belarusian State University of Food and Chemical Technologies Raisa Kondratenko, Director of the Yanka Kupala State Literary Museum Anna Galinskaya, and a member of the Union of Writers of Belarus Nataya Golubeva.

Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko also presented the general’s epaulets.

Major general shoulder straps were presented to Andrei Gorbatenko and Vadim Shadura, shoulder straps of the major general of the police to Dmitry Rezenkov, Oleg Shulyakovsky and Dmitry Korzyuk, shoulder straps of major general of justice to Anatoly Vasiliev; epaulets of the state counselor of justice 3rd class to prosecutors from Vitebsk Oblast and Minsk Oblast Igor Ukrainets and Yuri Shchetko; shoulder straps of the state adviser of the customs service 3rd class to Deputy Chairmen of the State Customs Committee Eduard Danilovich and Andrei Bolshakov.

The President once again congratulated everyone on the well-deserved high awards and, addressing the men, told them not to let the women down. The head of state drew attention to the fact that a lot has been done lately to improve the technical level of the Armed Forces, law enforcement and the security service so that they can adequately defend the Motherland. “I just want to tell women: don’t worry, we will do everything to maintain peace and tranquility on our land, so you can safely raise your children. I wish you happiness, prosperity and success, and most importantly, health to you and your children.