Belarussian President Believes That Opinions On Prospects For Commonwealth Development Differ

Opinions concerning CIS development differ, Belarussian president Alexander Lukashenko told a concluding press conference when the jubilee CIS summit was over. He pointed out that many politicians prefer the European Union as a standard and stressed that he personally comes out against "movement towards the European Union" since this will be a "roll-back". Lukashenko believes that to further develop the CIS the experience of the former USSR should be used with its "highest degree of integration" based on the common economy. The Belarussian president also pointed out that he does not call for restoring the USSR but feels sorry for its disintegration. Lukashenko is of the opinion that if economic issues within the CIS framework are solved -- a free trade zone established, legislation unified and labour force has an opportunity to move freely -- the problems of conflicts on CIS territory will be solved. In this connection the Belarussian president stressed that poverty and unprotectedness of people throughout the world are a cause for conflicts and all "negative phenomena".