Elections of deputies to House of Representatives of National Assembly and local councils

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Belarusian President Aleksandr Lukashenko cast his vote in the elections of deputies to the House of Representatives of the National Assembly and local councils in Minsk on 25 February.

The head of state cast his vote at the polling station in the Belarusian State University of Physical Education.

"A difficult time is ahead for us. In the Parliament we need people who are professional, reliable and devoted to the Belarusian people," Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

Answering the journalists' question, the head of state pointed out that the ultimate goal of the self-exiled opposition in any of their scenarios is the same - a coup d'état and seizure of power. “It does not matter whether it is going to be a long or short game, the goal is the same - Belarus must be turned in the opposite direction. In order to do so, they first need to overthrow the current government. It will be very difficult, I am sure of this. Especially after the single voting day, the elections. We will elect reliable, intelligent people who understand what tasks our people are facing. Therefore, none of the scenarios, even the most radical one, will not work in Belarus,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

The country has already drawn conclusions from the events of the past years, so there is absolutely no hope for them to implement their plans today, the President is convinced. “Nevertheless, they will be trying to undermine the situation here,” the head of state said. “They consider themselves strong and capable of big things. They view Belarus as a small dot on the map which needs to be erased in order to move closer to the east, to the resources, closer to Moscow. We understand this very well.”

According to the President, Belarus, together with Russia, is keeping in mind different scenarios and consider ways to counteract them. “We will always stay united with Russia. This is the only way we can resist any opponent,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said. “The world today is a force and understands only force. We cannot stay soft and keep fighting for democracy and some ephemeral freedom - you have seen what kind of ‘democracy’ they have.... We need to focus on our goals, our interests, be sincere and pursue a policy of justice. Then, it will be the unity of our people. Of course, we will have all kinds of critics. They are present in any society. All these scenarios are unrealizable. We all see it perfectly well. You do not even have to worry about anything in this respect.”

Aleksandr Lukashenko was asked whether he is planning to run in the next election.

"I will. Relay this to them [self-exiled opposition]! The more difficult the situation becomes, the more actively they will work to rock our society and you (not a single person, a responsible President will abandon his people who followed him into battle and this is very important for me, believe me,). The harder they try, the more likely I will bid for re-election. Don't worry, we will do everything necessary for Belarus," the head of state said.

When asked a clarifying question whether these words can be perceived as an unequivocal statement and whether a new electoral cycle has already begun, the head of state stressed: "I have already spoken a lot about an electoral cycle and their efforts to rock the boat before the Presidential election, which is the culmination of the electoral cycle. This is what the electoral cycle it. Officially or unofficially…  As the question so the answer. If you need specifics, I will be absolutely straightforward and sincere: I cannot say anything new yet."

"There is still a year ahead before the Presidential election. A lot can change. Naturally, I and all of us, the society, will react to the changes that will take place in our society and the situation we will have before the vote in a year," Aleksandr Lukashenko added. 

The President said that now he is thinking about something else: about holding the Year of Quality. "So that you remember it even if the current President decides not to run. The last thing is remembered best. Therefore, this year will be important and this is something that I communicate to the society and the executive authorities that have worked honestly and will continue to work until the election," the Belarusian leader said.

Aleksandr Lukashenko named the main qualities for the President of Belarus.

“I know that many officials do not like me, because I strictly demand the fulfillment of our agreements and decisions taken by the President. If they are not implemented, then the whole structure of power will collapse and the society will drown. Yeah, I realize that. Probably, not all journalists like me because of my character and so on. But the good thing is that journalists, and then the society, thanks to journalists, begin to realize that everything that Lukashenko said or demanded turned out to be the right thing,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.

The President cited the example of the fight against the coronavirus: the Belarusian approach was not immediately accepted, but then it turned out that the decisions of the head of state were the most optimal in the midst of the pandemic. The country did not impose a lockdown, did not shut down factories and enterprises. Such moves brought their desired effect. “The whole world was going in an absolutely different direction. Who turned out to be right in the end?” the Belarusian leader asked a rhetorical question.

“This is my job: to think and forecast using my experience and knowledge. If the President is unable to do this, he or she is not fit for the job. Therefore, this is the main quality of the President. Naturally, one must have a very strong sixth sense. Most importantly, one should always remember where he or she came from, be a down-to-earth person. One must also remember that 10 million people and three million more, who come here on holiday, are people whom you should truly care about. You should care about them the most once you are President,” Aleksandr Lukashenko said.