Belarusian Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makey, who is taking part in today’s summit of the Eastern Partnership, has answered journalists’ questions.
According to the minister, there is no reason why a new EU-Belarus agreement could not be signed. “I am convinced that the agreement will be signed, and this will happen sooner rather than later. We are working on it together with our European partners,” he said.
“We need to move on gradually. Certain steps should be taken by each party. I think there is a recognition that such an agreement needs to be concluded,” he stressed answering a Belsat journalist’s question.
When asked about the West’s stance on the Belarusian nuclear power plant in Astravets, Makey pointed out that they were ‘different’ opinions. He stated that Belarus did conduct stress tests at the NPP although it was not necessary.
“We cooperate with the European Union, and we are open to cooperation. Moreover, we were not obliged to conduct stress tests that we had run, because it was a requirement of the European Commission, but we did it, it was our decision. Now we are analyzing these stress tests.”
Uladzimir Makey also spoke out on the subject of the partnership in the field of mobility and migration:
“The Mobility Partnership is our cooperation in the field of migration. It was concluded between Belarus and the EU. We are working on the further implementation of the agreement. An ordinary citizen may not have much to do with it; it is more about what arrangements we have with the European Union in the field of migration on how to deal with those illegal migrants who appear in one or another part of our region on the both sides of the border.”
In October, the European Union expressed readiness to welcome Belarus president Alyaksandr Lukashenka at the summit. It is the first time he has received a personal invitation to the Brussels. For years, the Belarusian leader had been denied entry to EU member coutries. However, on November 21 it became known that Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makey would head the Belarusian delegation at the upcoming event. The reason for such a decision was not given.