The presidents of Russia and Belarus agreed not to destroy the Union Treaty, Alyaksandr Lukashenka said at Tuesday’s meeting with State Secretary of the Union State Grigory Rapota.
“If we start revamping the agreement, we will destroy everything that has been created for this time,” he said.
According to him, they decided to develop a program of further integration of Belarus and Russia.
“We have determined the framework, points, bench marks, placed flags, as hunters say, to outline the range of work. We specified things that cannot be implemented today,” state-run news agency BelTA quotes Lukashenka.
The president called on people not to discuss whether Belarus will become part of Russia or not as ‘it makes absolutely no sense’. The two leaders are set to ‘move step by step in order to implement the provisions of the Union State treaty’, he stressed.
At the same time, Alyaksandr Lukashenka was critical of the fact that too many issues had not been tackled yet. In particular, he complained of the Russian market’s being closed for some Belarusian goods.
At the end of 2018, the Belarusian-Russian relations significantly deteriorated. In late December. there were some meetings of Alyaksandr Lukashenka and Vladimir Putin. The Russian leader pressed for ‘further integration’ while his Belarusian counterpart insisted on reducing gas prices and getting compensation for the tax maneuver.
On December 25, Lukashenka and Putin agreed to establish a working group on the integration within the Union State. Later, the leaders of Belarus and Russia repeatedly got back to the subject.
On May 29, during the meeting in Nur-Sultan, Vladimir Putin and Alyaksandr Lukashenka discussed the prospects of the integration process. According to Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov, the leaders instructed the governments to develop integration measures by the end of June.
On June 4, Belarus’ Prime Minister Syarhei Rumas and State Secretary of the Union State Grigory Rapota met in Minsk to discuss an action plan on integration. The document needs to be prepared by 21 June. However, the details of the negotiations remain under wraps. For example, the government refused to disclose any information to opposition MPs Alena Anisim and Hanna Kanapatskaya. Oddly, Belarusian Foreign Minister Uladzimir Makey remained tight-lipped about the talks saying that it would be ‘premature’.
Last week, Vladimir Putin promised to discuss the topic of ‘close integration’ with president of Belarus on the sidelines of the 6thForum of Regions of Belarus and Russia on July 18 in St Petersburg.
Meanwhile, opposition activists who believe that our country does not need the Union State, have launched the public campaign ‘Belarus Go!’ They are collecting signatures for our country’s withdrawal from the alliance.