Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko said that he had no attitude either to Ms. Rice or to her remarks
President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko has arrived in Moscow with one-day visit to participate in the session of the Supreme Council of the Unified State of Russia and Belarus. The council is expected to discuss several integration issues, about currency, cooperation in the field of fuel industry and guarantees of equal rights for citizens of the two countries, a source in the Kremlin said. The previous session of the Supreme Council took place in Moscow in October 2003.
Alexander Lukashenko is not scared of revolutions, which have recently rocked Georgia, Ukraine and Kyrgyzstan, so it did not become a trouble for the president to leave Belarus for several days without having any apprehensions of a massive rally. The Belarussian authorities reacted very harshly to the USA's accusation of human rights violations in Belarus. The US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice even said that Alexander Lukashenko was the last dictator in Europe. Rice also dropped a hint about a possible revolution in Belarus.
It is worth mentioning that Condoleezza Rice had a meeting with leaders of the Belarussian opposition in Lithuania before she cracked down on Lukashenko. One of those leaders was subsequently detained on the Belarussian border, as he was returning to the country.
When Lukashenko arrived in Moscow, he stated that he could see both positive and negative aspects in Ms. Rice's statement. “It is good that she knows that there is such a country as Belarus. There are a lot of positive aspects from this point of view. She was recently flying over Belarus in a plane and could see that there were no terrorists there at all,” Lukashenko told Interfax news agency as an answer to the question about Condoleezza Rice's harsh remarks regarding Belarus.
”A philosophical approach to any process reveals both negative and positive sides about it. As for Ms. Rice's statements about Belarus and Russia, I would not separate them. I do not have any attitude either to Rice or to her remarks,” Lukashenko said.
Members of the Supreme Council of the Unified State of Russia and Belarus are said to discuss questions of coordinated actions in the filed of foreign policy, strengthening the security of the Unified State, particularly conditions for creating a regional group of Russia-Belarus troops.
Official spokesman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, Alexander Yakovenko, said that the session of the Council was aimed at achieving certain results in the field of integration between Russia and Belarus to add more dynamics to the entire process of building the Unified State. The diplomat added that Russia and Belarus achieved a record level of commodity circulation in 2004 - $17.6 billion.
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