Lukashenko confirms Russia's being first priority for Belarus

Belarus' President Alexander Lukashenko has confirmed Russia's remaining the basic priority for his country. "The union of Russia and Belarus is no game for us; we favour cooperation as close as possible," he said Wednesday in Mogilev when appearing at a seminar of Belarussian managerial personnel.

According to him, opponents of Russia-Belarus integration are choking with emotion when relishing recent setbacks in Belarussian-Russian relations. Lukashenko is convinced however that there is no alternative to the union of the two states. "It is required to search for effective dialogue," summed up the Belarussian president.

The day before he had said that Belarus had got a proposal to become the 90th jurisdiction of the Russian Federation but wanted no such outcome. "There is a suggestion from Russia to build the future Union on the federative principle while Belarus offers a confederation," reported the president. "We are a sovereign independent state with all its components and are prepared to build a union on a par." Reporting that the Belarussian side was to give an answer to the proposals and initiatives laid down by Vladimir Putin not later than on June 25th, Lukashenko noted that he and the president of Russia could not have any discrepancy of principle regarding the necessity of a Belarussian-Russian union.

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