Belarus’ relations with the EU should be more vigorously developed without damaging Russia, Lukashenka made the statement as he met with Chairman of the State Duma of the Federal Assembly of Russia Sergei Naryshkin, state-owned news agency BelTA reports.
According to Lukashenka, within the framework of integration Belarus will pursue a very active policy. “We have never abandoned the idea and never will,” he stressed.
Belarus’ President asked for understanding the fact that as Belarus is in between two giants, i.e. Russia and the European Union, it has to build relations with these conditions in mind.
“Since economy is important for us, we have to build normal relations with the European Union without damaging our ally and brotherly nation of Russia under any circumstances,” Aliaksandr Lukashenka expressed his confidence.
At the same time, the President admitted the need of “more actively moving towards the European Union”. “We understand perfectly that our bad relations with Europe cannot benefit relations with Russia,” BelTA quotes him as saying.
EU: No necessity to choose
It is interesting that Maira Mora, Head to the EU’s Delegation to Belarus, said in an interview on June, 10 that the European Union does not believe that financial assistance is what it takes to achieve systemic and sustainable modernization, when asked whether the EU could provide as much money as Russia did to win Belarus over to its side.
“The choice Belarus supposedly has to make between east and west has long been and will remain a false one,” Ms. Mora said. “Every country has the right to choose alliances that serve its interest best, and involvement in one alliance does not preclude involvement in others as long as they all are based on compatible rules, values and principles. In addition, while Russia may be more flexible in helping Belarus’ authorities address their immediate wants, the EU believes not in quick fixes but in conscious, systemic reforms that ensure sustainable development of economy and society and contribute to regional and global stability”.