Interview with Turkish broadcaster TRT
Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko gave an interview to the Turkish broadcaster TRT. The interviewer was Nisa Efendioglu, a journalist and presenter of TRT Haber TV channel.
The interview focused on such topics as the migration crisis, pressure on Belarus, sanctions of the West and possible response measures. Besides, the Belarusian President was asked about the Belarusian-Turkish relations, the development of integration with Russia.
When asked about the reasons behind the pressure on Belarus, Aleksandr Lukashenko said: “Deep reasons behind pressure on Belarus are connected to the USA. I am not going to recount all the reasons. I will try to specify the key ones. The key reason is that we happened to be the key link in the USA’s and NATO’s pressure on Russia.”
He reminded about last year’s events in Belarus: “They tried to make Ukraine out of Belarus just the way they demand of us today. We asked them: what do you want? [They said] we would like Belarus to be like Ukraine. I responded: we don’t want to be a Ukraine, our nation does not want it, and we will never be. This is why they tried to convert us into Ukraine last year using a so-called color revolution and a revolt. They failed.”
According to the President, by doing so they want to complete the Baltic Sea-Black Sea belt and create a bloc with the eastern border near Smolensk. “In order to further pressure and, frankly speaking, move into Russia,” the Belarusian leader stated.
Aleksandr Lukashenko remarked that once the revolt failed and a fast attempt to break the country failed, they switched to systematic pressure and a hybrid war. “Pressure and attacks against Belarus from various directions with different intensity are the essence of this hybrid war. It is manifested as pressure via mass media, via diplomatic channels, political channels. And now they have switched to tough pressure via economic channels. Five packages of sanctions have been introduced by Americans and Europeans against Belarus,” the head of state said.
Speaking about the migration crisis on the Belarusian-Polish border, Aleksandr Lukashenko gave his take on Poland’s plans to build a wall on the border with Belarus. He called it a stupid idea.
“Apparently, some of the initiators of this project in Poland have run out of money. Therefore, they want to replenish their wallets using this project. If we talk about the wall, it will cost neither $400 million nor $500 million, as they plan, but about $1 billion,” the head of state said.
He noted that a wall had already been built in some sections of the Belarusian-Polish border, but this does not help deter refugees: “As Polish special services admit, most of the refugees penetrated the country in the areas where this wall was built. All in all, about 25,000 people. Therefore, does it make any sense to build such a wall?”
Aleksandr Lukashenko recalled the U.S. attempts to build a wall on the border with Mexico. "One President was into it, the next administration is destroying this wall now. I think that something like that will happen in Poland,” the Belarusian leader noted. “We are not concerned about it. That's their problem. Let them do it. This will not hurt us. But the situation in Poland is very unstable. The current government may not survive. And I am sure that smarter, more rational people will come to power and find better use for one billion U.S. dollars."
The head of state cited the Berlin Wall. "Its fall was a victory for European democracy. Everyone welcomed the destruction of dividing lines and walls on the border! Now they want to fence the European Union off with a 5.5m high wall? Somehow it does not fit into their ideology and democracy. This is a stupid, silly idea," the President concluded.