Meeting with EU Special Representative for Human Rights Stavros Lambrinidis

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Belarus is in favor of the full-fledged dialogue with the European Union on human rights, Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko said as he met with European Union Special Representative for Human Rights Stavros Lambrinidis on 9 March.

The President stressed that stand-alone one-time measures will not help solve such a sensitive issue as the issue of human rights. “Full-fledged dialogue, regular contacts are needed because this is the issue of the economic and deep psychological nature. And the efforts to avoid full-fledged dialogue will be counterproductive,” Aleksandr Lukashenko is convinced.

The Belarusian President stressed that both Belarus and the European Union passed their ways and abandoned this head-on confrontation. The Belarusian head of state said that the EU and Belarus “built an unnecessary wall between each other and did not even talk over this fence, just exchanged statements.”

Aleksandr Lukashenko expressed hope that this time would remain history now.

Aleksandr Lukashenko expressed confidence that this would bring serious changes to other areas as well. “I do not separate humanitarian and economic issues. Solutions to humanitarian problems directly depend on the economic situation. “As the economy advances, many humanitarian issues, including human rights, as understood in the European Union, will get sorted out,” the head of state is confident.

The Belarusian President noted that he does not criticize Europe for its understanding of human rights. “The European Union is a mature organization with smart people who can formulate what they want,” said Aleksandr Lukashenko. “But we have our own understanding of humanitarian issues, including human rights issues,” the President remarked and stressed that the position of Belarus depends not only on his personal understanding or the understanding of the Belarusian government. If this had been like that, all these issues would have been quickly solved in Belarus, added the President.

Stavros Lambrinidis, in turn, assured the President of Belarus that the EU, just as Belarus, does not view human rights in isolation from economic issues. “We believe that the progress in this area will directly depend on, for example, foreign investments and trade and economic cooperation,” he said. According to Stavros Lambrinidis, the EU expects to boost cooperation with Belarus in all areas.