Meeting with EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Vice President of the European Commission Catherine Ashton

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Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko met with the European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Vice-President of the European Commission Catherine Ashton. The head of state said that he did not expect the meeting in Minsk to secure a colossal breakthrough in the efforts to settle the situation in Ukraine’s east but hoped that the Minsk meeting would allow its participants to make up their minds conceptually in order to start moving towards peace in Ukraine.

“It is difficult for us to set some grand goals that we have to reach here in Minsk,” noted the head of state. “In all likelihood, one can hardly expect a colossal breakthrough but we should make up our minds conceptually in order to at least start moving towards peace. None of the heads of state or you will argue if the dialogue that has begun today will continue until the situation is fully settled”. The Belarus President stressed that it is necessary to tune down the conflict that had erupted in the center of Europe by any means. Aleksandr Lukashenko said that he had just met with Ukraine President Piotr Poroshenko and even before that the topic had been discussed with President of Russia Vladimir Putin. “Everyone desires an end to this. No one needs this fratricidal war. We need peace. Without peace there is no economy. There will be no talks between Ukraine and the European Union, the Customs Union about the resolution of some economic problems then. A peace is needed. It is what matters,” stressed the Belarus President.

Aleksandr Lukashenko also assured: “We will do our utmost to fulfill all the agreements made here and to create a platform for negotiations in Minsk”. The Belarusian head of state underlined that Belarus is ready to play its role in order to advance the resolution of the crisis in Ukraine.