Macron tries to persuade Putin into talking to Tsikhanouskaya

Belarusian opposition leader Svyatlana Tsikhanouskaya is open to dialogue, French President Emmanuel Macron told his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin over the phone on October 1.

Macron called Putin in the wake of his meeting with Tsikhanouskaya in Vilnius, where he was on an official visit at the beginning of the week. According to the Belarusian politician, the French leader told her that France would provide its assistance in the talks on settling the grave situation and releasing political prisoners in Belarus.

President Macron has recalled that she is open to dialogue with Russia; he has asked President Putin to take this fact into account, the office of the French leader reports.

Macron and Putin share the view that the mediation of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) would contribute to resolving the current political crisis in Belarus, the statement reads.

Lukashenka meets with Russian governor, while Tsikhanouskaya meets top European leaders

On September 30, German Chancellor Angela Merkel confirmed that she would also meet with Svyatlana Tsikhanouskaya in Berlin in the near future.

The Kremlin press service also reported today’s phone call, stressing that Russia had no intention to meddle in the neighbouring country’s internal affairs.

“The situation that emerged following the Belarusian presidential elections was also touched upon. The Russian side reaffirmed its principled position that it is inadmissible to attempt any interreference in domestic affairs of a sovereign state or put pressure on legitimate authorities from overseas,” news agency TASS quotes the press service.

On August 9, the presidential vote was held in Belarus; its official results were not recognised by the EU and the United States. The Kremlin, in turn, acknowledged the legitimacy of Alyaksandr Lukashenka’s sixth presidency. Moscow sees no sense in establishing contacts with representatives of the opposition Coordination Council set up by Tsikhanouskaya and her associates, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told his Belarusian counterpart Uladzimir Makey.

EP President: We call on Lukashenka to engage in dialogue with Coordination Council