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Opinions & Interviews

17 Nov 2017

Belarus described as fitting site for peace talks

Belarus described as fitting site for peace talks

MINSK, 17 November (BelTA) – Belarus has become a venue for peace talks in the conflict situations in other countries thanks to its historical experience, Vice Chancellor, Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs of Germany Sigmar Gabriel said at the meeting with Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko on 17 November, BelTA has learned.

Sigmar Gabriel stressed that Belarus and Germany went through different times in mutual relations. “We, Germans, think about the hideous crimes the Nazis committed against Belarus and the people of the country during the Second World War. It is a miracle how friendly and open the people of your country are to Germany today. We would like to thank you for your friendliness and openness which can not be taken for granted,” he said.

According to the minister, there were disagreements in relations in the past and there are disagreements today. “But if we look what the starting point of our relations was, then we can surely be optimistic about the future of our relations. The relations went through the horrifying times. Today, both the states are deeply committed to peace,” said Sigmar Gabriel.

“Belarus is a small country of 10 million, neighboring on the larger countries and always being dependent, to a certain extent, on relations with them. Maybe it is such historical experience that makes the country well-suited for the role of mediator in case of conflicts in other countries. And perhaps this is the reason why Minsk has become such a wonderful venue for the Normandy Four negotiations,” Sigmar Gabriel noted.

He expressed gratitude to Minsk for hosting these talks. “You still host the negotiations within the trilateral format. You are absolutely right when you say that we have succeeded in preventing the war. And we very much hope that Minsk will continue to play such an important role in the future,’’ Sigmar Gabriel said.

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