Ukrainian development and Customs Union games: Belarus at crossroads (video)

The Kremlin makes no disguise of his dissatisfaction with the events in Ukraine. Nevertheless, they are sure to affect Minsk-Moscow relations. To improve the economic situation, Aliaksandr Lukashenka is likely to take advantage of Yanykovych’s leaving.

The people over the border stopped silent obeying and took power in their own hands, which the Belarusians may regards as an act to follow. In response, Lukashenka is preparing martial law broadening Belarusian snipers’ powers. The law may be adopted in late 2014. However, the Belarusian leader is not going to conflict with Ukraine.

ANDREY SUZDALTSEV, political analyst:

‘According to the information I got, 3-4 weeks ago he made an attempt to establish contacts with a winning faction. Naturally, he will be trying to earn support from the new Kyiv’.

In contrast to the Russian authorities, Lukashenka seems to be refraining from addressing strong words to Maidan.

English subs:

{movie}In Focus item (25.02.2014) Customs Union Games (ENG subs)|right|15018{/movie}


‘They have their own issues, we have ours, which our policy will be based on. They have their state, we have ours. We have the same aims towards Ukraine. Ukraine shouldn’t be split. No one is allowed to tear this great country apart, it is not indifferent to us.’

Minsk has never backed the initiative of the partition of Ukraine which has become a media hit in Russia these days. It is still unknown whether Belarus will support Moscow’s threats to ban exporting Ukrainian meat and dairy products to the Customs Union. But Lukashenka is apparent to seek Putin’s help in the near future, Mr Suzdaltsev says. Especially since there has been no call for a multi-billion loan the Kremlin promised to Ukraine yet,

ANDREY SUZDALTSEV, political analyst:

‘Yanukovych has left, and Lukashenka may well be stressing during his talks with Putin: if you don’t provide assistance tomorrow there will be another Maidan in Belarus.’

There is a slim chance that Mr Putin will turn him down.

ALES LAHVINETS, political analyst:

‘If Russia is in trouble with Ukraine – it looks like that Russian is trying to destabilise the situation – its relations with Minsk will be smoother’.

Especially if the economic situation in post-revolutionary Ukraine turns to the better.

KIRILL KOKTYSH, political analyst:

‘It will pose a challenge to the Customs Union, and Russia will have to make it more attractive by investing money and developing new principles.’

But Vladimir Putin is certain to demand some guarantees in exchange for his brotherly backing, experts say.

ALES LAHVINETS, political analyst:

‘Even $15 bn promised to Ukraine were not to have been granted for a song, but under the average interest rate’.

Speaking about our country, Russia might well continue taking over Belarusian companies.

Martsin Yarski/MS

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