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Opinions & Interviews

18 Jan 2019

Makei: No trading off sovereignty despite turbulent times

Makei: No trading off sovereignty despite turbulent times

MINSK, 18 January (BelTA) – In this era of turbulence no state can survive alone, Belarus Minister of Foreign Affairs Vladimir Makei told reporters, BelTA has learned.

Speaking about the participation in the integration associations while maintaining the sovereignty, Vladimir Makei noted that he sees no contradiction here. “I recently met with my European counterparts, the foreign ministers of Austria and Hungary, and I asked their opinion on this matter. I think, there is a clear, unambiguous understanding that today, in the turbulent times, no state can survive on its own. Particularly small and medium-sized countries, especially those that do not have powerful financial resources, large mineral deposits. Therefore, there is a general understanding that it is important to participate in integration associations that bring some political and economic dividends to a state,” Vladimir Makei noted.

At the same time, Vladimir Makei stressed that there is a clear understanding that there is no trading off sovereignty. National interests are the top priority. “Both European ministers said that today few talk about friendly states or brotherhood in interstate relations. National interests come first. If we look at the behavior of some large geopolitical players, big geopolitical powers, then we see that the most important thing for them is to promote and protect their national interests, expand influence in the region,” Vladimir Makei said. The minister noted that he does not have any specific states in mind.

“Being an average-sized European state, Belarus should also think how to protect, defend its interests, to maintain and to strengthen our sovereignty and independence, territorial integrity,” the minister said.

 

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